It has been another quiet week in the rice market as the harvest progresses and the market indicators have remained fairly constant. Export sales for the week was off as compared to the previous several weeks with a total of 39,600 MT reported sold. This is a substantial decrease from last week’s volume, but will hopefully pick up over the next several reports.
Vessel loadings were up as prior sales shipped. This continued movement through the market helps to alleviate some of the congestion that often occurs at this time of year. Asia pricing was virtually unchanged since last week’s report.
None of the major benchmark indicators shifted of note in value. Similarly, USDA has held its world market price estimate constant for yet another week. Given the stability in the market at this time, none of these factors are likely to change unless a major source of new demand is found or the new crop harvest deteriorates.
In the domestic cash markets, pricing has also remained a constant factor. Some areas that trade against the futures board have seen some price fluctuations, however the underlying basis seems to be be stable.
Harvest continues to progress in the Upper Delta region and indicators suggest that quality and yield are more optimistic that many in the trade were led to believe earlier in the season. Milling out-turns have held up as have field yields for much of Mississippi and Arkansas. Early lots from Missouri also report average to above average production at this time.
In the futures market, the board generally traded down over the course of the week although Thursday’s trading saw the bulls take control and attempt to recover the weekly losses. Overall, the market saw negative returns for the week with losses ranging between 1.4% -2.36% for all open contracts on the board.
Of note is the steadily increasing volume and open interest that has materialized over the last week of trading. With the advent of September in the coming week and the resultant crop reports that will be released the week following, many in the trade wait with baited breath.
Needless to say, the projections that will be eminently released will have a bearing on the long term market outlook and with firmer data in hand, there is a reasonable expectation that there will be revisions to both sides of the balance sheet at that time.