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March WASDE largely ignored by markets, which remain more focused on war

The March World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates was largely ignored by the trade with the Russia-Ukraine war in full view. However, the U.S. Department of Agriculture did surprisingly acknowledge and make some minor adjustment to the balance sheet with the Black Sea export disruptions.

dumping wheat.jpg
While the markets largely ignored the March World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates as it continues to focus on the war in Ukraine, the U.S. Department of Agriculture did acknowledge and make some minor adjustment to the balance sheet with the Black Sea export disruptions.
Agweek file photo
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The March World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates was largely ignored by the trade with the Russia-Ukraine war in full view. However, the U.S. Department of Agriculture did surprisingly acknowledge and make some minor adjustment to the balance sheet with the Black Sea export disruptions.

USDA lowered Ukraine exports by 4 million metric tons to 20 million, as the conflict in that country is expected to disrupt shipments from the Black Sea region. Russia exports were reduced 3 million metric tons to 32 million as vessel transportation is expected to be constrained by the conflict and the imposition of economic sanctions. Partly offsetting these reductions were increases for 2021-22 Australian and Indian exports, up 2 million and 1.5 million metric tons, respectively to 27.5 million and 8.5 million.

John Heinberg with Total Farm Marketing said he wasn’t sure if USDA would even acknowledge the war in their figures.

“However world exports were still above expectations,” he said.

World ending stocks were raised 3.3 million metric tons to 281.5 million metric tons. U.S. wheat ending stocks were raised by 5 million bushels to 653 million bushels.

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USDA also made slight adjustments to corn exports, raising that figure for the United States and India but reducing projections for Ukraine. Global ending stocks were pegged at 300.97 million metric tons which is down nearly 1.2 million metric tons from February. The agency also lowered U.S. ending stocks 100 million bushels as a result, to 1.44 billion bushels.

“USDA raised U.S. corn exports by 75 million bushels to work in the lower Ukraine losses,“ Heinberg said.

South American corn production was left unchanged for Brazil at 114 million metric tons and lowered just 1 million metric tons for Argentina to 53 million metric tons.

Soybean ending stocks were lowered by 40 million bushels to 285 million bushels, with an increase in exports by the same amount. Soybean exports are now projected at 2.09 billion with lower production for South America. In fact, USDA lowered Brazil’s crop size by 7 million metric tons to 127 million metric tons and Argentina by 1.5 million metric tons to 43.5 million metric tons. Meanwhile world ending stocks were lowered nearly 3 million metric tons to 89.95 million metric tons.

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