Rice Market Update: No Tricks or Treats for Now

©Debra L Ferguson Stock Photography

With the arrival of Halloween and the end of October, there have been no tricks or treats of consequence in the rice market. Export sales for the week held stable at a substantive 85,000 MT, an infinitesimal gain over last week’s 84,000 MT. Continued sales of this magnitude would be highly welcomed but also highly unlikely as a sustainable volume. Regardless, these numbers will help to keep the market moving and also to ultimately end the impasse in pricing at the farm level.

Vessel loadings were also reported higher than last week. Export tonnage should stay fairly elevated in the coming weeks given the large sales outstanding that have yet to ship. USDA lowered its world market price for both classes of rice this week. With the recent market moves (or more precisely lack thereof), this is an interesting adjustment however further revisions can be expected in the coming weeks.

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Asian benchmark prices have not changed in any significant capacity over the past several reports and this week is no different. The supply and demand equation in that part of the world appears fairly stable with even the currency valuations remaining fairly constant. Until some major movement occurs in the fundamental side of the market, these numbers are unlikely to change over the near term.

In the domestic cash market, pricing remains nominally unchanged across all of the regions. Early season cold weather is expected to hit the rice growing regions over the next few days which will have an impact on the second crop production. As late as the ratoon crop is in Texas and Louisiana this year the ramifications of a freeze/frost could be severe with respect to second crop quality and quantity. With first crop harvest all but completed in all of the states, the cool weather will have limited impact.

In the futures market, the bulls and bears had a contest over the week and after a hotly contested series of trading sessions, the bulls seem to have triumphed and kept the open contracts in positive territory for the week. Gains ranged from 0% – 0.67% respectively with the nearby months seeing the least amount of change. The market closed on Thursday on a much higher average daily volume and slightly lower open interest as compared to last week’s report.

Full report.

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