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What is happening in the oil market?

Какво се случва при пазара на масла?

In a paper, Grain and Oilseed Forecast to 2024, released Feb. 15 at the Agricultural Outlook Forum 2024, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said, "Soybean acreage is expected to increase as demand for soybeans in the United States is expected to be driven by important factors – largely driven by growth in biofuel use – while exports are likely to face competition from South American supplies in the 2024-25 US marketing year.”

In its February 19 arable market report, the UK's Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board said "pressure on Chicago soybean futures (May 2024) continues as the contract ended 1.2% lower during the week, closing on Friday at $432.15 per ton.”

"An improved South American crop outlook, weak demand and US soybean planting in 2024-25 also contributed to price pressure," AHDB explained. "Widespread rainfall in Argentina's agricultural region over the past seven days has improved the outlook for soybean supply."

Many agricultural consultants peg this harvest at 50 million tons or more, and the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange estimates the harvest at 52.5 million tons. The weather in late January and February was perfect for growing. This large harvest offset some of the crop losses from Brazil.

For canola, the situation is good, supported by crude oil, but also helped by a report that the combined grain and oilseed crop in Ukraine could be down 15% to 20% due to reduced acreage.

"As EU rapeseed supplies are expected to be lower for the 2024 crop, this reduction from Ukraine may further tighten the oil/vegetable oil market as Ukraine is a large supplier to the EU market," says in the message.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) said in its food price index released on February 2 that global vegetable oil prices in January 2024 rose by just 0.1% from the previous month, but however, they are 12.8% lower than the level a year earlier, in January 2023.

"The stability of the price index on a monthly basis reflects the combined effect of higher global palm and sunflower oil prices offsetting lower soybean and canola oil quotes," FAO said.

"Meanwhile, global sunflower oil prices rose, led by increased import demand, particularly from Turkey." In contrast, international soybean and canola oil prices declined accordingly due to the prospect of large supplies from South America and remaining large stocks in Europe,” the report concluded.

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