Chicago Close: Bread Demand Underpins Wheat



Wheat futures ended higher again on Wednesday as the market continued to be buoyed by increased demand for bread and pasta.

With many consumers forced to stay at home amid covid-19-related shutdowns, food staples like bread and pasta have been flying off store shelves. The benchmark Chicago market saw the largest gains today, with the relatively short supplies of Soft Red Winter adding to the upside. May Chicago wheat jumped 18 ½ cents to $5.80, May Kansas City gained 10 ¼ cents to $5.01 and May Minneapolis climbed 2 ½ cents to $5.37 ½.

Fresh export demand helped to lift corn to small gains as the USDA announced an old-crop export sale of 138,000 tonnes to unknown destinations this morning. On the other hand, American ethanol production is continuing to decline. For the week ending March 20, ethanol production averaged 1.05 million barrels per day, which was 30,000 barrels per day below the week prior. In the last three weeks production has dropped off 74,000 barrels per day. May corn was up 1 ¼ cents to $3.48 ½ and December was 2 cents higher at $3.67 ¼.

Soybeans were mixed, with support coming from ideas covid-19 may slow exports from Argentina. Argentine producers must file online for special passes permitting them to move product during the covid-19 shutdown there. May beans slipped 5 ¼ cents to $8.81 ½ but November was up 2 ½ cents at $8.77 ½.

Live cattle futures were mostly lower on the day. Hogs ended weaker.

Source: DePutter Publishing Ltd.

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