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Russian wheat prices fall for fifth week

Reuters, 04.09.19

Export prices for Russian wheat fell last week for the fifth consecutive week as competition with Ukraine and other producers intensified, analysts said on Monday.

Russian wheat exports have been slow so far this season, to the benefit of Ukraine which has seen a surge in its grain shipments, traders said last week.

Black Sea prices for wheat with 12.5% protein content fell $1 to $189 a tonne on a free on board (FOB) basis by the end of last week, Russian agricultural consultancy IKAR said.

SovEcon, another Moscow consultancy, pegged wheat at $189 a tonne, down $2 "as Russia's suppliers need to compete with other origins." Barley dropped $4 to $177 a tonne.

Russia has exported 8.7 million tonnes of grain since the start of the 2019/20 season, 7% less than in the same period of the previous year, SovEcon said. That figure included 7.3 million tonnes of wheat.

On the domestic market, prices for third-class wheat rose by 25 roubles to 10,525 roubles ($160) a tonne at the end of last week in European parts of Russia on an ex-works basis, SovEcon said. Ex-works does not include delivery costs.

The weather in the Black Sea region is expected "to be very dry in the next two weeks, which is beneficial for the harvest of sunflower and corn. However, this could lead to a lack of moisture for winter wheat," SovEcon said.

Russian farmers have already sown winter grains for next year's crop on 15.2% of the planned area or on 2.7 million hectares.

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