China, Taiwan, and Japan were the leading buyers of U.S. soybeans last week to put total sales above the previous week and to keep old-crop business in excess of USDA's annualized forecast.
USDA's weekly export sales reported old-crop corn sales at 14.3 million bushels, which topped expectations, while the new-crop business of 15 million missed.
Chicago grain futures had little reaction to the news as traders remain focused on the big corn and soybean crops now growing in U.S. fields and are awaiting Friday's USDA crop production and demand reports.
Old-crop soybean export sales at 2.07 million bushels were up from the previous week and within trade forecasts, with China, Taiwan and Japan the leading buyers. New-crop sales of 19.3 million bushels topped expectations and were primarily to China and unknown destinations. Export shipments were 3.3 million bushels.
"Total soybean shipments are already 2 million bushels above USDA's forecast for the marketing year, with total commitments 75 million past the forecast," said Bryce Knorr, Farm Futures senior grain analyst. "That increases potential for the agency to offset some of the increased June 1 stocks reported last month with a higher export forecast, keeping old crop stocks tight."
In its daily release, USDA on Thursday reported 4.34 million bushels of 2014-15 soybeans were sold to China, and 4.63 million of old- and new-crop were sold to unknown destinations. The latter deal involved 2.2 million of old-crop and the rest new crop.
Old-crop corn exports of 14.3 million bushels were about as expected and up 25% from the previous week, with South Korea, Japan and Egypt top buyers. New-crop business of 15 million was near the low end of forecasts and down from the previous week. Export shipments were up 33% from the previous week, with Japan, Mexico, and South Korea the top three destinations.
"Corn shipments were strong at 47.5 million bushels, in line with the rate forecast by USDA for the marketing year. The new-crop book is pretty thin, however, as end users appear to be waiting for lower prices," said Knorr.
Wheat sales of 12.4 million bushels were down from the previous week and missed expectations. The Philippines, Saudi Arabia, and South Korea led buyers.