* Corn, wheat, soybean sales below forecasts
* Rival exporters offering cheaper corn, wheat
* Soybean sales drop due to week-long holiday in China
By Karl Plume
Oct 12 U.S. corn export sales fell well short of
expectations last week to just a fraction of the normal
harvest-time pace as near-record-high prices after the worst
U.S. drought in a half century encouraged importers to buy feed
Export sales of U.S. wheat fell for a third consecutive
week, according to weekly U.S. Agriculture Department data
released on Friday, hitting a four-month low because of high
U.S. prices and stiff competition from rival suppliers.
A drop in net soybean sales to a two-month low was largely
due to reduced purchases by top importer China where markets
were closed last week for a national holiday.
"The corn and wheat sales were definitely poor. Ukrainian
and Latin American (corn) offers are cheaper for now. We are
still finding Argentina and Brazil offering cheap corn into the
end of the year," said Dan Basse, president of AgResource Co.
USDA pegged net corn sales in the week ended Oct. 4 at 4,200
tonnes for shipment in the current marketing year and 10,000
tonnes for the 2013/14 marketing year which begins Sept. 1,
The sales were below trade forecasts for 300,000 to 400,000
tonnes and well below levels that would be considered normal for
the season. Exporters sold a net 1.344 million tonnes of corn in
the same week last year, USDA data showed.
Corn sales in the season to date totaled 10.4 million
tonnes, down 43 percent from the same point a year ago. U.S.
corn exports were projected to fall 25 percent this season to a
U.S. wheat sales on the global market slumped last week to
the lowest point since late May as rival exporters continued to
offer grain at lower prices.
Russian wheat had dominated the market since late summer
before its stocks ran low, allowing Western Europe to assume the
role of low-cost wheat supplier. Once EU supplies run low, U.S.
wheat will be competing with grain from the Southern Hemisphere,
Net sales of all classes of U.S. wheat totaled 279,900
tonnes, all for shipment in the 2012/13 season, below trade
estimates for sales between 350,000 and 550,000 tonnes.
Net soybean sales were 523,700 tonnes, all but 23,000 tonnes
of which were for shipment in the current marketing year. The
sales were below forecasts for 750,000 to 850,000 tonnes.
* USDA export sales data
* U.S. corn weekly export sales
* U.S. soybean weekly export sales
* U.S. wheat weekly export sales
* U.S. weekly export sales