UPDATE 1-EU wheat rises as traders say Ukraine to stop exports
(Updates prices, adds official Ukrainian comments on exports) PARIS, Oct 19 (Reuters) - European wheat futures rose on Friday to a one-week high after traders said Ukraine would ban wheat exports from mid-November, taking one of the world's leading suppliers out of the market for the rest of the season. * Gains were moderate, however, as an outright ban was not confirmed by the authorities and with grain operators having already anticipated some form of export squeeze in Ukraine in view of its shrinking surplus. * Benchmark November milling wheat was up 2.75 euros or 1.06 percent at 262.50 euros a tonne by 1524 GMT, off an earlier high of 263.75 euros. * Chicago December wheat was up about 1.5 percent, after also reaching a one-week high earlier in the session. * Traders in Ukraine said on Friday the agriculture ministry was banning wheat exports from after Nov. 15 in response to its weather-hit harvest. * "You saw the initial reaction of the market, it was higher, but we're off the highs so I don't think it's a surprise that there's some sort of restriction out of the Ukraine, the market has been anticipating this," said a European trader. * Grain operators have been expecting both Ukraine and neighbouring Russia to fade from export markets in the coming weeks after poor weather cut their harvest supply, whether through government measures or market forces. * The agriculture ministry did not react to the traders' comments but said in a later statement that a high pace of wheat exports would exhaust stocks available for shipping abroad by Nov.15-20 and it urged traders to be cautious in concluding new contracts. * Traders in Ukraine said the government maintained its target for 5 million tonnes of wheat exports in the 2012/13 season, but the ministry said contracts had already been signed to export 5.4 million tonnes. * The ministry's statement was closer to what some traders were expecting. * "We were expecting indirect restrictions, a firm encouragement or an instruction perhaps. I'm not sure 'ban' is the right word," another trader said. "The terms of this 'stop' need to be clarified. This can't be a 'ban' for a member of the WTO (World Trade Organisation)." * While Ukraine's limited export availability after this year's poor crop was priced in by the market, a swift move to halt exports could still support the western European market by underlining its current role as key supplier to importers around the Mediterranean. "If you remove this origin (Ukraine) at a time when Russia hasn't got anything left to sell either, this will have an effect on European wheat which will be left alone in export markets," a third trader said. "There is of course South American competition but the quality of their harvests are not yet clear and their export surpluses are going to be reduced." * The news from Ukraine added to support for wheat markets from weather concerns related to dryness in wheat belts in the United States and Australia, also major exporters. * In France, weekly data from farm office FranceAgriMer showed sowing of winter wheat and harvesting of maize remained well behind last year's pace, after frequent showers in the past month slowed field work. * As of Oct. 15, some 20 percent of winter wheat had been sown, up from 14 percent a week earlier but down from 51 percent a year ago, the office said. For grain maize, 31 percent of the crop had been harvested, up from 16 percent the prior week and down from 77 percent a year ago. * In export tender news, Tunisia was seeking durum wheat for shipment in late November or early December. * Prices as of 1524 GMT Product Last Change Pct Move End 2011 Ytd Pct Paris wheat 262.50 2.75 +1.06 195.25 34.44 London wheat 204.00 2.60 +1.29 152.25 33.99 Paris maize 242.00 2.25 +0.94 196.75 23.00 Paris rape 481.50 4.25 +0.89 421.50 14.23 CBOT wheat 881.50 13.00 +1.50 652.75 35.04 CBOT corn 767.50 6.75 +0.89 646.60 18.70 CBOT soy 1541.75 -3.75 -0.24 1198.50 28.64 Crude oil 91.79 -0.31 -0.34 98.83 -7.12 * Paris futures in euros per tonne, London wheat in pounds per tonne and CBOT futures in cents per bushel. (Reporting Gus Trompiz and Valerie Parent in Paris and Sarah McFarlane in London; editing by James Jukwey)
- Exclusive: Secret contract tied NSA and security industry pioneer |
- U.S. aircraft hit by gunfire in South Sudan as conflict worsens
- With Fed out of the way, what's next on Wall Street?
- Four men arrested in deadly N.J. shopping mall carjacking
- Analysis: Lost Brazil order raises threat to Boeing fighter jets