Winnipeg - ICE Futures Canada canola contracts closed with small gains on Thursday, as solid end user demand and a lack of significant selling pressure helped the market see some consolidation ahead of Friday's USDA supply/demand report.
Japanese pricing of old export business was behind some of the strength in the lightly traded canola market, according to a broker. A lack of fund selling, after speculators were heavy sellers earlier in the week, was also supportive. Farmers were also said to be on the sidelines for the most part.The weaker Canadian dollar, which was just above parity with its US counterpart, was another supportive price influence, as the softer currency helped crush margins improve. Gains in CBOT soyoil also underpinned canola, although soybeans closed lower.
The most active January contract managed to settle just above the psychological C$600 per tonne level, which was seen as supportive from a technical standpoint, according to participants.
The USDA releases updated supply/demand estimates on Friday, and positioning in the US markets ahead of that report kept some caution in the grains and oilseeds, including canola. The report is generally expected to include an upward revision in US soybean production.
About 7,411 canola contracts were traded on Thursday, which compares with Wednesday when 6,844 contracts changed hands. Spreading accounted for about 3,880 of the contracts traded.
Milling wheat, durum and barley futures were untraded and unchanged.
Settlement prices are in Canadian dollars per metric ton.
Futures Prices as of April 17, 2014
Prices are in Canadian dollars per metric ton