This week’s export sales report was significantly higher than has been seen in many weeks. At over 86,000 MT, this sets a marketing year high. Also, it should generate some much needed movement in the mill inventories while helping to work through the current stockpiles. The downside is that if the historical buying trends hold steady, this may represent the most significant volume to hit the books for the next few weeks. While more consistent purchases are desirable, the industry will take what it can.
- Vessel loadings were reported at higher values for the week as well. This should encompass much of what has already been sold up to this point. Hopefully with the new sales ready to be moved, the vessel tonnage will hold at higher levels for a few more weeks.
- The world market price estimate was held constant for the week with no changes to either class from last week’s values.
- In Asian markets, pricing has continued to note minor depreciation over the past few weeks. Given the minimal nature of the price changes and the fluctuations in the currency markets, much of these adjustments are likely due to the currency valuations. Underlying softness has not materialized enough to be warranted at this point.
- The futures board has had a rough week with the market action as the open contracts moved slowly but inexorably downward. At Friday’s close, the open contracts on the board posted minor losses over last week’s values.
- In the domestic cash markets, the news has remained firm from a pricing standpoint with very little change. The bidding does not seem to be drifting upward and growers pricing ideas have not budged to the downside. With the overall quantity of new crop rice having been purchased, this stalemate will probably remain for some time.
- The long term outlook will be influenced heavily by the export sales volumes in the coming weeks and any new domestic business that the mills can glean in addition to what has already been done. If any new business of significance arises then the pricing floor will undoubtedly move higher. Meanwhile, if it remains business as usual (as defined by the past month or two) then it is likely that the existing price boundaries will maintain the status quo.