Brazil Political Crisis Strikes Grains Trade; All Eyes on Currency

Brazil's forward sales of commodities such as grains and sugar have nearly ground to a halt as manufacturers, trading companies and experts evaluate the impact of the possible impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff.

After a year-long boom in sugar and corn exports, commodity merchants and farmers are bracing for continued conditioning of the genuine if Rousseff is ousted, decreasing the price benefit of Brazilian products and possibly curbing foreign sales.

The Brazilian currency has actually rallied in recent weeks, in spite of a deep recession, amidst investors' hopes the left-leaning Rousseff will be changed by a more business-friendly administration.

" Sellers and purchasers are essentially just waiting to see exactly what is going to take place," said Fabio Meneghin, senior expert at Agroconsult, a leading Brazilian consultancy. "Except for spot deals, there is very little going on."

Meneghin stated that costs for a big share of forward deals for Brazilian grain were generally set on shipment, changed for changes on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) and in the local real currency.

"Obviously nobody wishes to take that type of threat today," he said.

Brokerage and consultancy firm INTL FCStone said in a report on Wednesday that a change of government in Brazil, with market-friendly Vice-President Michel Temer taking over, would raise the genuine to 3.10 to the dollar, compared with 3.54 currently.

The firm stated if the impeachment is declined and Rousseff stays on, the real might fall to 4.10 to the dollar, increasing the price advantage of Brazilian exports.

For soybeans, FCStone states overall exports this year might fall from the existing price quote of 54 million loads to 50 million loads if the government changes and the genuine appreciates, moving some buying to the United States.

In the option scenario, Brazil might export as much as 56 million tons.

For sugar, FCStone says impeachment could reduce the sweetener's profitability in export offers, encouraging local mills to increase ethanol production to sell the fuel locally.

The brokerage also stated an ousting of Rousseff would boost the existing pattern of corn imports, since foreign shipments would end up being more affordable for Brazilian pork and poultry manufacturers that are experiencing tight regional supplies of corn.

Agroconsult'sMeneghin likewise said manufacturers are stressed the political crisis will freeze the process of setting the next crop funding package - usually announced around May or June - as the federal government is completely absorbed with fighting the impeachment process.

The last package for the 2015-2016 season was more restrictive, with greater rate of interest.

Brazil's lower house is anticipated to vote on Sunday on whether she need to be attempted in the Senate over accusations she broke budget plan laws. Ought to 2 thirds of the lower house vote in favor of impeachment, the process would go to the Senate and Rousseff would be suspended while she dealt with trial, with Temer taking her restaurant.

Tarcilio Rodrigues, head broker at Sao Paulo-based Bioagencia, expects a currency swing to have actually restricted impact on some commodities, such as sugar.

"At least 80 percent of the exportable surplus has actually been sold and hedged with sugar futures and currency agreements, basically repairing the mills' cost for sugar this year", he stated.

A comparable situation occurred with soy and corn, with producers taking maximum advantage of the real's depression in 2015 to export record volumes.

Although possibly losing out on anticipated currency movement if Rousseff's impeachment is approved, many manufacturers support the ousting.

The National Agricultural Confederation (CNA) is arranging a tractor "intrusion" of the capital Brasilia on Sunday to pressure congressman to vote for impeachment.

Famato, an entity representing producers in top grains state Mato Grosso, stated they fear a continuing degeneration of the economy if Rousseff remains, it states.


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