give a lift to the wheat market.
Net new bookings of old and new crop wheat topped 30 million bushels in the latest week. The government confirmed rumored purchases by Brazil, 6.7 million bushels, forced by lower production in Argentina. Japan also bought multiple loads, while China was in for 6.3 million bushels of new crop.
While the total sales were good, old crop shipments of 19.3 million bushels remain below the rate forecast by USDA for the marketing year. That may make it difficult for the 2012 crop total to meet the government's estimate for the crop year ending May 31.
Old crop corn sales improved this week to 11.6 million bushels, above the rate needed every week for the rest of the marketing year to reach USDA's current forecast. Japan and China led the list of buyers, though some of the deals were merely switched from previously announced purchases by unknown destinations. New crop purchases were slow at only 744,000 bushels.
Slow sales of old crop soybeans were mostly for relatively small amounts, and the total, only 2.4 million bushels, is another sign world demand has shifted south. However, shipping delays out of Brazil remain a problem, so buyers out of the U.S. are taking delivery and not cancelling any purchases – getting a ship out of Brazil's main port can take two months. Total shipments for the marketing year are strong, but have slipped below the record pace seen two years ago. China shipped out only 4.8 million of the 20.9 million exported in the latest week, allowing other buyers to take delivery.
China was a good buyer of new crop soybeans, however, accounting for almost all of the 23.3 million bushels of deals completed.