U.S. Wheat Associates Price Highlights – January 4, 2013
- In a four day trading week, wheat futures posted a fifth consecutive week of losses despite very little wheat specific news. A significant loss in soybean futures and a stronger U.S. dollar were the main influences on wheat this week. A resolution in U.S. fiscal negotiations led to a strong opening on Wednesday but markets closed lower after a quick round of profit taking. The CBOT March wheat contract fell 32 cents on the week to close at $7.47/bu. MGEX March lost 27 cents to $8.41/bu and KCBT March closed down 22 cents at $8.05/bu. CBOT March corn fell 14 cents to $6.80/bu and CBOT March soybeans lost 51 cents to close at $13.67/bu.
- In the month of December, the CBOT March wheat contract fell 13 percent, KCBT March dropped 12 percent and the MGEX March declined 10 percent. Concerns about high protein wheat supplies helped limit MGEX losses. This was the largest single-month decline since September 2011.
- HRW crop conditions declined in many states in December. In Kansas, the largest HRW wheat producer, the percentage of wheat rated poor or very poor increased from 25 percent in November to 31 percent. Oklahoma’s poor or very poor rating increased from 44 percent to 61 percent with 11 percent rated good and no wheat rated excellent. The percentage rated poor or very poor in South Dakota increased from 64 percent in November to 70 percent with 3 percent rated good and no wheat rated excellent.
- The Baltic Panamax Index continued to drop this week, falling to 670 points from 699 last week. In addition to an over-supply of ships, earnings for Panama ships below operating expenses, pushing the index lower. Maritime Research’s Grain Freight Index fell slightly this week to 401.0 points from 401.2.
- The US Dollar Index increased 1 percent this week to 80.61, up from 79.62 last week.