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Wheat prices soar to highest since 2008 on potential Russia supply hit

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Ears of wheat are seen in a field near the village of Hrebeni in Kyiv region, Ukraine July 17, 2020.
Valentyn Ogirenko | Reuters

The price of wheat on Tuesday rose to its highest levels in more than a decade, with traders concerned about global supply disruption as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine advanced.

A convoy of Russian military vehicles is approaching Ukraine’s capital of Kyiv, satellite imagery taken Monday indicated.

Wheat futures rose 5.35% to 984 cents per bushel as of 11:30 a.m. ET, at the highs of Tuesday’s session. That marks the highest price since April 4, 2008, when wheat traded as high as 985.5 cents per bushel.

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The grain traded “limit up,” which refers to the highest amount the price of a commodity is allowed to increase in a single day.

Russia is the largest exporter of wheat and Ukraine is among the four biggest exporters of the commodity, according to JPMorgan.

Of the 207 million ton international wheat trade, 17% comes from Russia and 12% comes from Ukraine, according to Bank of America.

“Wheat and corn are the most exposed agricultural markets to any potential escalation in tensions,” JPMorgan’s Marko Kolanovic said in a Feb. 14 note.

Corn futures on Tuesday also last traded up 5.07% at 725.75 cents per bushel, their highest level since May. Trading of corn futures also halted.

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— CNBC’s Pippa Stevens contributed to this report.

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