* Thailand buys 50,000 T of Canadian spring wheat
* Indonesia takes 180,000 T of Australian prime wheat
* Asian buyers lock in supplies as wheat prices fall
SINGAPORE, Feb 7 Thai flour mills bought 50,000
tonnes of Canadian spring wheat this week, while Indonesian
importers booked Australian wheat cargoes as buyers took
advantage of lower global prices to lock in supplies.
Canadian spring wheat to Thailand was sold between $380 and
$385 a tonne, including cost and freight, for shipment in May
and June, traders said.
"I think more buyers in Asia will take Canadian wheat," said
a trader with an international trading company in Singapore.
"Canadian prices are very attractive and the quality is similar
to the U.S. spring wheat."
U.S. spring wheat is being offered around $395 a tonne.
Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand are key
importers of U.S. spring wheat in Asia, besides Japan and South
U.S. wheat futures have lost almost 4 percent in three
consecutive weeks of decline, with investors taking positions
ahead of monthly supply and demand reports from the U.S.
Department of Agriculture due on Friday.
Indonesian millers paid around $355 to $360 a tonne for
180,000 tonnes of Australian prime wheat to be shipped in April
South Korea's Daehan Flour Mills bought 40,500 tonnes of
Australian milling wheat and CJ Cheiljedang Corp separately
bought 1,500 tonnes of Australian milling wheat via tenders this
The wheat market is closely watching the U.S. winter crop
for price direction. A severe drought in the U.S. Plains is
threatening crop yields, although weekend rain has been forecast
in parched areas.
In the feed grain market, South American soymeal prices rose
this week on the back of dry weather in top supplier Argentina
that has threatened crop yields.
U.S. soybean meal futures have gained 1.7 percent
this week in a fifth straight week of gains.
Argentine soymeal was quoted around $530 a tonne for May
shipment to Asia, up around $10 from last week. This compares
with Indian soybean being offered close to $560 a tonne, with
not many takers.
Warm and dry weather has stressed the soybean crop in
Argentina, the world's No. 3 soybean supplier after Brazil and
the United States. The dryness represents a sharp turnabout for
Argentina, after excessive rains delayed planting in December.
This should prompt the USDA to tighten its forecast of
global soy inventories in its monthly report on Friday.
Asian grain buying is likely to slow next week, with traders
and millers in China and Southeast Asia closed for the Lunar New
(Reporting by Naveen Thukral)