The U.S. cash rice market remains firm despite export sales decreasing for the second consecutive week. However, there was very little trade activity to speak of today as buyers and sellers remain about $0.50-$0.75 per cwt (about $11-17 per ton) apart. Some analysts were concerned by the heavy rain that passed across part of Arkansas last night, fearing that it could reduce field yields and force farmers who were planning on planting their remain acres with rice to reconsider in favor of a different crop.
As of today, offers from farmers were could still be found around $16.25-$16.50 per cwt fob farm (about $358-$364 per ton) for 50 pounds of whole rice or better for June shipment while offers from resellers were unchanged as similar levels.
Bids from some mills increased to around $15.00 per cwt (about $331 per ton) for June delivery which generated zero selling interest while bids from smaller mills and exporters increased to around $16.00 per cwt (about $353 per ton) for June delivery although there were rumors that at least 1 barge traded around $16.10 per cwt (about $356 per ton) however this is believed to be for domestic consumption.
In the meantime, today the USDA reported that for the week ending on May 24, U.S. rice exporters sold 34,000 tons, which was 42% lower than last week and 45% lower than the prior 4-week average, with the primary destinations including: 17,200 tons to Mexico, 8,000 tons to Taiwan, 1,600 tons to Jordan, 1,200 tons Canada, and 1,100 tons to South Korea.
U.S. rice exporters shipped 27,900 tons, which was 43% lower than last week and 66% lower than the prior 4-week average. The primary destinations included: 8,500 tons to Haiti, 5,800 tons to Taiwan, 3,200 tons to Colombia, 2,600 tons to Mexico, and 2,400 tons to Saudi Arabia.