The World Wheat Situation, 1933-34: A Review of the Crop Year

To observers concerned with improvement in the world wheat situation, the crop year 1933-34 was one of disappointed hopes and expectations. Early indications pointed toward a world wheat crop ex-Russia small enough to assure substantial reduction of the world wheat surplus and to foreshadow a rise in wheat prices, with an accompanying measure of relief to wheat producers and to governments deeply engaged in assisting producers. Week by week as the season progressed, however, the crop forecasts and estimates made larger and larger world totals; and appraisals standing in December 1934 were some 300 million bushels-nearly 10 per cent-above forecasts current in August and September 1933. World wheat prices, low when the crop year opened, tended to fall rather than to rise in the early months. Even with an advance in the spring and early summer of 1934 associated with unfavorable development of the ] 934 crop, the average crop-year price of wheat (gold basis) on free import markets fell to a new low-an occurrence avoided, however, in several countries where national currencies were sufficiently depreciated, or where protective devices provided sufficient shelter. Governmental price fixing, direct and indirect subsidization of wheat exports, and barriers to wheat imports were more widely in evidence than ever before. Year-end stocks were brought to a new high level when the year closed. The first attempt at governmental co-operation in international wheat control was unsuccessful in its major objectives. "Wheat adjustment" in the United States, domestically a qualified success, had little or no favorable influence on the current international position. The volume of international trade in wheat and flour plumbed new post-war depths (though this was early anticipated), and ruled at the level characteristic in the first decade of the twentieth century.

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Wheat Studies, 11, 04
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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2020-10-28

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