AFEX Commodities Exchange Monthly report for March 2020 – Market Experiences Increased Volatility and Decline in Prices

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Prices on the  Exchange witnessed a  lull as the AFEX Commodities Index (ACI) dropped by -0.39% over the period. The commodities covered by the Index remained neutral in the month under review. This was influenced partly by the lockdown measures, which were put in place by the Government to combat the COVID-19 pandemic near the end of March.

The open market indicative prices tightened considerably and were greatly influenced by the crop cycle in the agrarian North which indicated a gradual depletion of market stocks in March, thereby narrowing supplies as the markets inch closer to the lean season for commodities. The month-average executed prices in the Open market were higher than the Exchange Prices for maize, soybeans and paddy rice.

In the international Market, maize and soybeans prices eased in March, being most pronounced for maize as the commodity experienced a price decline of -3.0% due to seasonal pressures. Global supply chains are however at risk of disruption from the current global pandemic of COVID-19 which has its epicenter situated in Southeast Asia a major food-producing hub.

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