Cepea, April 17, 2020 – With the coronavirus pandemic worldwide, the US dollar continues at record levels – the American currency has been higher than 5.00 BRL since March 16. This scenario, which makes Brazilian commodities more attractive to importers, and the halt in port activities in Argentina (Brazil’s competitor when it comes to exporting soybean and its by-products) have fastened the exports pace for the Brazilian soybean.
Thus, aware of the price levels and volumes available in Brazil, new international purchasers have been interested in buying the Brazilian product. As a consequence, in Paranaguá (PR), soybean prices remained higher than 100 BRL per 60-kilo bag during the first fortnight of April, a nominal record in all Cepea series, which started in March 2006 for this product.
In March, Brazil exported 11.6 million tons of soybean, more than two-fold the amount shipped in February and only lower than the record volume exported in May/18 – when, it is worth to mention, there was a fierce competition between the United States and China. In the first quarter of 2020, soybean shipments totaled 18.25 million tons, 12.3% more than that in the same period last year, according to data from Secex.
As regards soybean meal, Brazilian shipments totaled 1.56 million tons in March, more than two-fold the volume exported in February and 8.9% higher than that from the same period last year. In the first quarter of 2020, however, soybean meal sales to the international market were 5.3% lower than that in the same period last year.
Soy oil exports, in turn, totaled 102.41 thousand tons last month, the highest since July 2019, almost 70% more than that shipped in February and 31.2% up compared to that from March/19. In the first quarter of 2020, Brazil shipped 175.38 thousand tons of the product, 14.8% up compared to that in the same period last year.
In the Brazilian market, although prices have hit nominal records, a large amount of the crop has already been traded. Some growers are now closing deals for delivery in the second semester of 2020, as well as part of the 2020/21 crop for delivery in the first semester of 2021.
Between March 31 and April 15, the ESALQ/BM&FBovespa Index in Paranaguá remained practically stable (-0.04%), closing at 101.17 BRL (19.32 USD) per 60-kilo bag on April 15. The CEPEA/ESALQ Index in Paraná hit, on April 3, a nominal record in all Cepea series, which started in 1997 for this product, at 94.45 BRL (17.77 USD) per 60-kilo bag. In the first half of April (March 31 – April 15), however, this Index remained practically stable (-0.09%), closing at 93.76 BRL (17.91 USD) per bag on April 15.