Market Report

Thursday 5 December 2019


  • US prices are up €3/t on the week as the market continues to find solid export trade amidst confirmation of declining southern hemisphere crop prospects.
  • ABARES cut its estimate for Australian wheat production to 15.85mln t, down 8% year on year. Crop output was adversely affected by unseasonal conditions in the early spring.
  • Russian wheat prices recorded a third consecutive weekly rise last week, as higher demand from exporters and domestic processors offset a rise in producer selling.
  • Egypt’s state buyer GASC purchased 295,000t of Russian wheat for 21-31 January shipment, paying on average $3.50/t more than two weeks ago.
  • The condition of the French wheat crop deteriorated again last week, while farmers made limited progress with sowing. 75% of the crop now rated as in good/excellent condition, compared with 78% last week, with a fifth of the intended area still to sow.
  • EU (Paris) futures are up €3.25/t on the week, following the trend in the global market despite the US dollar falling to four-week low. Talk that Argentina had secured a sizeable share of the Algerian tender pulled prices down yesterday.
  • UK (London) futures are down £1.25/t on the week, pressured by a surging pound. However, seasonal logistics continue to underpin spot cash premiums.
  • Some progress has been made on drilling in the UK, but actual progress has been dependent on soil type and previous rainfall amounts.
  • In the UK, opinion polls showing a favourable outcome for the government in the forthcoming election has seen sterling surge higher over the past couple of days, undermining the UK’s export competitiveness and making imports look more attractive. However, there is a week to go before we see who the next Prime Minister will be and what that will mean for Brexit and all that goes with it.

Malting Barley

  • EU markets are slightly firmer this week with regard to old crop.
  • The EU spring area for crop 2020 looks likely to increase due to the continuing wet weather in France and the UK.
  • Buyers for new crop remain out of the market.
  • The UK market is very quiet, with most maltsters now saying that they have finished buying for the season.


  • The US soybean harvest drags on, with progress confirmed at 96% vs 94% last week. Storms that hit the US last week didn’t allow for much progress, leaving over 3mln acres left to be harvested. It sounds a lot, but it’s surprising how quickly they can gather it in. Weather remains mixed, with snow covering crops in northern parts of the US, but the Plains and Midwest remain dry.
  • CBOT soybeans managed to shake off their recent downtrend to close firmer in yesterday’s session. After several consecutive negative closes, the soy complex started to look oversold in the short term. This led to some technical buying in soybeans, and soymeal helped beans close 7cents firmer.
  • South American weather remains mixed. Argentina is mostly dry, except for some ongoing showers in the north and centre, whilst Brazil continues to see widespread rain. Informa estimate South American bean production higher than the USDA have reported, with Brazil at 124.5mln t vs USDA 123mln t, and Argentina at 52.5mln t vs USDA 53mln t.
  • The US/China “Phase 1” agreement still hangs in the balance. China is insisting that the US rescind all previous tariffs, something which the US refuses, so far, to action.
  • President Trump has defended US farmers, threatening Brazil and Argentina with fresh tariffs. On Monday it was announced that the US would restore tariffs on US steel and aluminium imports from the two countries, in an apparent retaliation for the currency weakness that is said to be hurting US farmers.
  • Canadian canola closed lower last night, touching two-month lows on a lack of fresh news. 2019/20 crop estimates now vary from 18.6mln t up to 20mln t, with StatsCan’s releasing its estimate on Friday.
  • Matif rapeseed recovered from the sharp fall we saw at the start of last week to touch on contract highs again before yesterdays close but struggled to break the next big resistance barrier. Continued strength in world vegoil markets and anticipation of logistics issues in France due to rail strikes are the main cause. The Malaysian palm oil board is expected to release production estimates on December 10th. Trade estimates predict stocks to drop to a 16-month low.
  • Here in the UK, sterling firmed above 1.1800, which again capped farm gate prices.


  • Old crop feed bean prices have firmed in the nearby positions due to a lack of farmer selling, as shippers look to cover their requirements for December vessels. On paper there remain plenty of feed beans available and therefore it is expected that this will be a spot squeeze as opposed to a long-term rally.
  • Human consumption premiums continue to hold, with Australian prices firming on the week on the back of a delayed harvest and lack of grower selling.
  • New crop bean and pea contracts remain available. We continue to see strong interest in these as growers look at alternative spring cropping.



  • The demand for pulses is strong this season given the lack of winter plantings. Spring peas have proven a popular choice and we have seed available to go against our market leading, closed loop, buyback contracts.
  • Daytona is the only remaining variety offer against large blue contracts.
  • Kabuki is still available to go with our marrowfat buybacks.
  • Spring bean seed is sold out until further notice.

Spring Cereals

  • We have a limited volume of imported Tybalt available. This is the only variety of spring wheat we have left due to unprecedented demand.
  • If you are looking for spring barley, we have LG Diablo available as a high yielding feed with some premium potential in the north. However, RGT Planet and Laureate are extremely short in supply.


  • Granular urea has remained supported as traders source supply for the Indian tender, shipment date by 19th
  • Chinese and Brazilian urea markets continue to offer demand, whilst European and North American buying is anticipated for Q1 2020, potentially offering further support for current prices.
  • Fertilisers in the UK appear to have found some stability, with stock holders sitting firm on the last months’ weakened prices. Signs of activity in the fertiliser market are beginning to emerge as drilling conditions change.
  • Clarity on the winter cereal crop size for next year is a key driver for future pricing, but is hard to calculate as adverse weather conditions have seriously affected drilling and establishment.
  • UK general election results and the impact on the future of Brexit will undoubtedly have an impact on sterling rates.
£/€ £/$ €/$
1.184 1.3135 1.1095
Feed Barley £ Wheat £ Beans £ Oilseed Rape £
Dec19 120-125 137-149 170-180 320-325
May20 125-130 141-151 175-185 325-330
NB: Prices listed may vary depending on area.

NB: Prices quoted are indicative only at the time of going to press and subject to location and quality.

“Although ADM Agriculture take steps to ensure the validity of all information contained within the ADM Agriculture Market Report, it makes no warranty as to the accuracy or completeness of such information. ADM Agriculture will have no liability or responsibility for the information or any action or failure to act based upon such information.”

ADM Agriculture cannot accept liability arising from errors or omissions in this publication.

ADM Agriculture trade under AIC contracts which incorporate the arbitration clause.

Terms and Conditions of Purchase.

On every occasion, without exception, grain and pulses will be bought by incorporating by reference the terms & conditions of the AIC No.1 Grain and Peas or Beans contract applicable on the date of the transaction. Also, we will always, and without exception, buy oilseed rape and linseed by incorporating by reference the terms & conditions of the respective terms of the FOSFA 26A and the FOSFA 9A contracts applicable on the date of the transaction. It is a condition of all such transactions that the seller is deemed to know, accept and understand the terms and conditions of each of the above contracts.

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