EU wheat ends week on a quiet note, eyes on hot barley market

Prairie wheat

Paris wheat futures were a bit changed on Friday as Chicago markets stabilize after a weather-fueled rally this week and a new high for the euro accentuated poor export prospects.

Paris-based Euronext wheat for May milling was unchanged on the day at 161.50 euros ($200.87) a ton, while spot March went down 0.50 euros to 159.75 euros ($198.36).

Chicago wheat eased as investors contracted profits after a six-month high this week linked to concerns over drought in the U.S. Plains and ahead of a three-day holiday weekend in the United States.

Additional to the gloomy export outlook for western European wheat was the new three-year high for the euro against the dollar which was above $1.25, although the euro later fell back.

European Union wheat exports are running well behind last season’s pace, scrunched by cheaper origins like Russia and the hesitation of farmers to sell at low prices.

Meanwhile, barley traders were struggling to catch up with demand and a huge import tender being held by Saudi Arabia was set to further tighten tapering off worldwide supply of the grain.

In Germany, wheat premiums in Hamburg were unchanged with the euro’s strength again reducing prospects for new export sales.

Standard bread wheat with 12 percent protein content for February delivery in Hamburg was offered for sale unchanged at around 5.5 euros over Paris March.

A high feed demand in Germany and other EU countries is partly offsetting the sluggish export pace.

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