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US net export sales of wheat in latest week fall to 10-week low

New Delhi — US net export sales of wheat in the week to September 12 slumped to the lowest in 10 weeks, falling 53.1% to 286,589 mt from a week ago, led largely by a reduction in sales to unknown destinations and the Philippines, latest data from the US Department of Agriculture showed Thursday.

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Wheat export sales for the week to September 12 were below market expectations, according to analysts, who had expected sales to be in the range of 300,000-600,000 mt for the week.

In the week ended September 5, US wheat export sales recorded strong weekly growth, driven by large bookings from the Philippines.

The Philippines is the second-largest buyer of US wheat after Mexico.

Physical wheat exports -- those which have been shipped from the US -- totaled 509,337 mt in the week to September 12, up 26% from the prior week, according to the USDA report.

Shipments to Ecuador were the largest in the week ended September 12, totaling 92,300 mt, followed by Sri Lanka and Nigeria who had imported 66,600 mt and 51,700 mt of wheat, respectively, from the US.

Total commitments -- cumulative exports plus outstanding sales -- rose 2.4% on the week to 12.3 million mt in the week ended September 12.

With over three months into the new marketing year, total commitments account for 46.4% of total US wheat exports estimated for 2019-2020.

The US is expected to export 26.5 million mt of wheat in the 2019-2020 marketing season (June-May), according to the latest USDA estimates. US wheat's new marketing year began June 1.

Marketing year to-date, US wheat exports totaled 7.4 million mt, 7.4% higher than a year ago.

Total wheat sales to Mexico reached 1.8 million mt to-date in the current marketing year, according to the USDA data.

Mexico has traditionally been the top buyer of US wheat, buying mainly US Hard Red Winter grade wheat.

The Philippines continues to be the largest buyer of US wheat in Asia, followed by Japan, according to the export sales data.

The Philippines buys mostly Hard Red Spring-grade wheat, while Japan buys a mix of Hard Red Winter and HRS grade wheat.

-- Rohan Somwanshi, rohan.somwanshi@spglobal.com

-- Edited by Norazlina Jumaat, norazlina.jumaat@spglobal.com