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U.S. export sales mostly down on week

Beef and sorghum were bright spots for U.S. exports during the week ending December 28th. The USDA says beef for 2023 delivery and sorghum sales, along with soybean oil, were the only commodities to post week-to-week improvements, not entirely surprising as it was Christmas week. Corn and soybeans both hit marketing year lows. Export business is influenced by several factors including seasonal changes in supply and demand, along with the value of the dollar relative to other currencies. The USDA’s next set of supply and demand estimates is out Friday, January 12th at Noon Eastern/11 Central.

Physical shipments of soybeans were more than what’s needed to meet projections for the current marketing year. The 2023/24 marketing year got underway June 1st, 2023 for wheat, August 1st for cotton and rice, September 1st for beans, corn, and sorghum, and October 1st for soybean products. The marketing year for beef and pork is the calendar year.

Wheat came out at 131,600 tons (4.8 million bushels), down 52% from the week ending December 21st and 79% from the four-week average. China purchased 65,800 tons and Mexico bought 37,400 tons. Just over halfway into the 2023/24 marketing year, wheat exports are 560.9 million bushels, compared to 550 million in 2022/23. Sales of 4,300 tons (200,000 bushels) for 2024/25 delivery were to Mexico.

Corn was reported at 367,500 tons (14.5 million bushels), 70% lower than both the previous week and the four-week average. Mexico picked up 171,100 tons and Colombia purchased 165,300 tons. A little more than a quarter into the marketing year, corn exports are 1.173 billion bushels, compared to 855.9 million this time last year. Sales of 200 tons for 2024/25 delivery were to Mexico (800 tons), with a cancelation by Colombia (1,000 tons).

Sorghum sales were 18,700 tons (700,000 bushels), 59% more than the week before, but 83% less than the four-week average. China bought 95,400 tons, but unknown destinations canceled on 68,000 tons. Sorghum exports are 154.8 million bushels, compared to 14.2 million a year ago.

Rice sales were 31,200 tons, a decline of 44% from the prior week and 69% from the four-week average. Mexico picked up 24,000 tons and Taiwan purchased 4,000 tons. Rice exports are 1,842,600 tons, compared to 1,039,500 last year.

Soybeans were pegged at 201,600 tons (7.4 million bushels), a drop of 80% on the week and 85% from the four-week average. Spain bought 136,700 tons and the Netherlands picked up 84,800 tons, but unknown destinations canceled on 277,800 tons. So far, this marketing year, soybean exports are 1.343 billion bushels, compared to 1.603 billion a year ago. Sales of 600 tons for 2024/25 delivery were to Japan.

Soybean meal came out at 81,400 tons, a decrease of 70% from the previous week and 62% from the four-week average. Venezuela purchased 40,000 tons and Mexico bought 38,000 tons. At this point in the marketing year, soybean meal exports are 7,148,100 tons, compared to 6,199,800 last year.

Soybean oil was reported at 1,200 tons, up 30% from the week before and 77% from the four-week average. Canada picked up 900 tons. Cumulative soybean oil exports are 33,500 tons, compared to 37,100 a year ago.

Upland cotton was pegged at 131,100 bales, 65% below the prior week and 24% under the four-week average. China purchased 50,700 bales and Vietnam bought 31,800 bales. 2023/24 upland cotton exports are 8,623,400 bales, compared to 8,786,400 in 2022/23.

Net beef sales totaled 9,500 tons, a solid increase on the week and 69% higher than the four-week average. The reported purchasers were China (3,200 tons), Japan (2,200 tons), Mexico (2,100 tons), Canada (900 tons), and South Korea (500 tons), with a net reduction by Indonesia (100 tons). Shipments of 17,000 tons were up 29% from the previous week and 17% from the four-week average, mainly to South Korea (4,800 tons), Japan (3,300 tons), China (3,000 tons), Mexico (2,100 tons), and Canada (1,400 tons). Sales of 7,100 tons for 2024 delivery were primarily to Taiwan (2,600 tons), Japan (1,500 tons), Mexico (1,100 tons), South Korea (900 tons), and Hong Kong (300 tons).

Net pork sales totaled 17,800 tons, down 25% from the week before and 35% from the four-week average. The listed buyers were South Korea (11,900 tons), Mexico (2,700 tons), Japan (1,800 tons), Colombia (900 tons), and the Dominican Republic (200 tons), with net reductions by Australia (200 tons) and Chile (100 tons). Shipments of 22,000 tons were 24% below the prior week and 33% less than the four-week average, mostly to Mexico (8,400 tons), South Korea (3,200 tons), Japan (2,500 tons), China (2,300 tons), and Colombia (1,400 tons). Sales of 9,900 tons for 2024 delivery were mainly to Japan (4,000 tons), Mexico (3,100 tons), South Korea (2,500 tons), Malaysia (300 tons), and China (200 tons), with net reductions by the Philippines (300 tons), Colombia (200 tons), Australia (100 tons), and Vietnam (100 tons).

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