Sentiment drying up fast
By Matt Wallis
The week that has been saw 1-2mm fall sporadically across southern NSW with nothing registering to the north or west. The forecast isn’t showing any encouraging signs in the next week whilst the days are becoming longer and warmer.
Conditions in Southern Queensland are grim at best with very little in crop rain registered to date in most parts, and some areas receiving none at all. It’s possible some receival sites won’t open for two or more years running as the cupboards are bare and the on-farm storage is likely to capture what little grain, if any, is harvested. A shining light is through Central Queensland which looks reasonable where cereal crops have been insured for yields of 1.5-2t/ha and sitting on good moisture profiles. Having said that, heavy frosting has been reported in the last 10 days and daytime temperatures are expected to reach 25 degrees, which off current pricing and risk assessments may see more winter crops cut for fodder rather than taken through to grain.
Moving south to Northern and Central NSW, conditions mirror Southern QLD as the limited crops that have been planted, have been going backwards for the past few weeks. Patches of average do exist however they are few and far between. Generally speaking, we need to look into southern NSW before we see the potential as conditions are much better than this time last year. However, the same story persists where sub soil moisture is scarce and further soaking rains are required.
Local old crop delivered markets have softened recently in some cases by as much as $50 a tonne over the past fortnight with the delivered Griffith zone bids all but drying up completely as stock in the trade is executed from interstate via rail and road. Currently delivered into the Griffith zone bids of $340 for August are on offer whilst onto the Darling Downs that market is bid closer to $380 delivered for October. For new crop, very little offered in NSW however the Geelong/Melbourne to Port Kembla zone spread remains firm with bias to the upside trading a spread of $25-$35 of late. This should see more grain drawn north from further out of the southern zones. Port Kembla track market continues to trade at evens to Newcastle at around $350-$360 port for new crop while the weakening old crop market has seen the old to new crop inverse reduce by as much as $45 since the start of July.
Barley is becoming an increasingly difficult commodity to market at present with the offers significantly outweighing the bid side of the equation. On farm parcels continue to appear, especially through the Victorian Mallee and Central West of New South Wales however demand has softened as end users extended coverage some time ago until what appears to be early October. With no fresh news on China’s appetite, exports remain out of the question for the time being.
Canola markets have been very quiet with production uncertainties the biggest factor here. The season hasn’t encouraged any forward selling to date with the southern third of NSW expected to account for the vast majority of the state’s crop.
Looking to global markets, we have seen the CBOT December 19 contract trade a relatively wide range over the previous week. This volatility can somewhat be explained by the recent WASDE report which highlighted decreases in major export countries ending stocks by 4.29mmt and in global production by 9.37mmt.
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