Race to reach wheat export forecast by month’s end

by Jay Sjerven
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WASHINGTON — As the end of the 2012-13 marketing year approached, it was uncertain whether U.S. wheat exports will reach the 1,025 million bus forecast by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The U.S.D.A. on May 16, in its weekly export sales report, indicated exports and undelivered sales of U.S. wheat in 2012-13 totaled 986.8 million bus by May 9, which was nearly 4% behind the year-ago pace, with three weeks remaining in the marketing year.

It should be noted that the wheat exports data table presented in the U.S.D.A.’s weekly reports does not include information on the export of wheat products, including flour, whereas the U.S.D.A.’s official wheat export forecast for a marketing year, the 1,025 million bus in the case of 2012-13, does. Data on wheat products export sales are presented separately in the weekly reports, and in summarizing the 2012-13 wheat export volume, the U.S.D.A. will aggregate wheat exports and the exports of flour and other wheat products expressed in their wheat equivalent volumes to derive a final U.S. wheat exports number for the year.

Through May 9 of the current marketing year, U.S. exports and undelivered sales of wheat products totaled 58,500 tonnes.

The U.S.D.A. in its initial supply-and-demand forecasts for 2013-14 projected wheat exports in 2013-14 at 975 million bus, down 50 million bus from the forecast for the current year. In the past few weeks, sales of U.S. wheat for delivery in 2013-14 often have exceeded sales for the remainder of 2012-13. As of May 9, wheat sales for 2013-14 totaled 151.2 million bus. That compared with new crop (2012-13) sales of about 94.6 million bus as of May 10, 2012.

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