PARIS: Euronext wheat ended mixed on Wednesday, with nearby futures firm on demand for EU supplies to replace war-hit Ukrainian and Russian exports, and deferred positions easing after U.S. government data suggested high prices may curb overall imports.
May wheat on the Paris-based Euronext exchange settled up 2.25 euros, or 0.6%, at 372.25 euros ($412.83) a tonne.
It pared earlier gains after the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) monthly world crop report, which cut expected wheat exports from Ukraine and Russia but also trimmed demand for several major importing countries.
New-crop September futures on Euronext settled 2.1% lower at 312.75 euros.
Chicago futures fell steeply after a record-breaking rally and investors turned back towards equities as panic over Russia’s two-week old invasion of Ukraine abated.
“There was some selling pressure in wheat on headlines that Ukraine was ready for a diplomatic solution,” a futures trader said. “If the end of the war could be near, that means old-crop supply at risk but less so the next crop.”
Farm office FranceAgriMer increased sharply its forecast of French soft wheat exports outside the EU this season as it anticipated France would replace some Black Sea trade disrupted by war.
Traders said French wheat was in contention to cover part of any purchase made by Algeria’s state grains agency OAIC in a tender.
Algeria started buying wheat in the tender at around $485 a tonne, cost and freight (c&f) included, with a possible volume of about 500,000 tonnes, traders said in initial estimates.
Adding to potential demand for French wheat, there was talk of further sales to Mexico, with four cargoes reportedly booked this week following another four last week, traders said.
In Germany, buyers of standard wheat for March onwards delivery in Hamburg were offering around 28 euros a tonne over Euronext May, with sellers seeking about 30 euros over, traders said.
“Wheat is being sought in south Germany and east European countries like the Czech Republic for export via German seaports,” a German trader said, adding that an export ban in Hungary had halted sourcing there.
In rapeseed, May futures set another record for Euronext at 908.25 euros a tonne, before paring gains as crude oil retreated.