Soybean markets continue to face pressure

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

© GettyImages/ICHIRO
© GettyImages/ICHIRO

Related tags Soybean sanctions Ukraine

Soybean markets continue to face pressure as South American supplies enter the market, coupled with lingering concerns about long-term demand.

Brazil's soybean harvest, progressing rapidly at 38% completion, outpaces the same point last year (34.5% complete), despite occasional adverse weather conditions, reads an AHDB report​.

In Argentina, the Rosario Grain Exchange marginally reduced its soybean production estimate to 49.5 Mt from the previous 52.0 Mt, citing the impact of the late January and early February heatwave.

While optimism surrounds South American crop prospects, the bearish outlook for soybean markets persists due to rising stocks in the US and diminished Chinese demand for animal feed, prompting speculators to build net-short positions in soybean futures, according to that UK organization. 

Sanctions imposed on Russia 

Looking to wheat and global markets experienced robust support driven by heightened international purchasing, newly imposed sanctions on Russia​, and apprehensions regarding Northern Hemisphere weather conditions, found ADHB.

The second anniversary of the invasion of Ukraine marked a significant development, with both the US and EU imposing numerous penalties on Russia. Although Russian supplies continue to competitively influence European grain markets, analysts emphasize the need for vigilant monitoring of the sanctions' impact in the weeks ahead.

Northern Hemisphere weather remains a focal point, with FranceAgriMer reporting that 69% of the French soft wheat crop is in good/excellent condition. However, sluggish progress in French spring barley plantings, at 26% complete compared to 20% the previous week, adds an element of caution, according to the UK based organization.

UK feed wheat futures mirrored the upward trend in global wheat markets, it added. The May-24 contract closed at £164.30/t (US$208.3/t) on Friday, marking a £1.15/t increase over the week. New crop (Nov-24) futures gained £2.35/t, closing Friday's session at £183.00/t.

South American corn prospects 

In the realm of corn markets, ADHB's outlook highlighted South American crop conditions and planting progress as pivotal factors influencing prices.

AgRural reported on Monday that Safrinha corn plantings in Brazil reached 59%, surpassing the previous year's 40% at the same period. In Argentina, the Rosario Grain Exchange revised down corn crop estimates due to a late January and early February heatwave. However, forecasts of essential rainfall in key agricultural regions over the next seven days have tempered concerns, maintaining optimism for the crop well above last year's levels.

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