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Russian wheat export prices follow global benchmarks higher

Reuters, 13.12.18

Russian wheat export prices rose last week after Chicago wheat futures, a global benchmark for the market, climbed 3 percent due to high US export sales data, analysts said on Monday.

Prices of Russian wheat were also supported by high demand from Egypt, one of its largest buyers. On Dec. 6, Egypt’s state grain buyer GASC agreed to purchase 290,000 tonnes of Russian wheat.

Black Sea prices for Russian wheat with 12.5 percent protein content and for delivery in December were $228 a tonne free on board (FOB) at the end of last week, up $3 from a week earlier, Russian agricultural consultancy IKAR said in a note.

SovEcon, another Moscow-based consultancy, quoted FOB wheat prices up $2 to $229 a tonne and barley down $3 to $237 a tonne.

The participation of Russian wheat traders in Egypt’s tender on Dec. 6 also showed they were unmoved by concerns related to Cairo delaying wheat payment guarantees, SovEcon said.

Egypt has not issued letters of credit for 16 recently purchased wheat cargoes, effectively meaning a delay in payment, sources said on Wednesday, though the authorities said appropriate payment guarantees had been or would be made.

“We assume that the delay is of technical nature and will not cause any noticeable disruptions in deliveries to Egypt,” SovEcon added.

As of Dec. 6, Russia had exported 24.6 million tonnes of grain since the start of the 2018/19 season on July 1, up 9 percent year on year. This included 20.9 million tonnes of wheat, SovEcon said.

Domestic prices for third-class wheat were up 25 roubles to 10,725 roubles ($162) a tonne at the end of last week in the European part of Russia on an ex-works basis, according to SovEcon. Ex-works supply does not include delivery costs.

Sunflower seed prices rose by 200 roubles to 18,250 roubles a tonne. Domestic sunflower oil prices were up 350 roubles to 42,350 roubles a tonne, while export oil prices were steady at $625 per tonne, the agency said.

IKAR’s white sugar price index for southern Russia was at $554.4 a tonne as of Dec. 7, down $0.9 from a week earlier.

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