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3 Big Things Today, September 1

Corn, Beans Little Changed Overnight; Old-Crop Export Sales Decent, New-Crop Strong.

1. Corn Little Changed, Beans, Wheat Slightly Higher Ahead of Labor Day

Corn was little changed overnight ahead of the long weekend while soybeans and wheat were slightly higher on bargain hunting.

Investors likely will sit on the sidelines today as the three-day Labor Day weekend starts, not wanting to get too long or short with uncertain weather and production looming.

Yields have been tough to gauge this year despite crop tours, analysts’ estimates, and government forecasts due to variable weather throughout much of the Corn Belt. Some areas received ample rainfall while others are still dry.

The USDA earlier this month pegged the corn crop at 14.153 billion bushels on yields of 169.5 bushels an acre and soybean production at 4.381 billion bushels with yields of 49.4 bushels an acre.

Last week, however, the Farm Journal Crop Tour put corn output at 13.953 billion bushels on yields of 167.1 bushels an acre. The U.S. soybean crop was pegged at 4.331 billion bushels with yields at 48.5 bushels an acre.

Corn futures for December delivery rose ¼¢ to $3.58¼ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade.  

Soybean futures for November delivery gained 3¢ to $9.48¼ a bushel. Soy meal added $1.60 to $301.10 a short ton and soy oil futures rose 0.05¢ to 34.68¢ a pound.

Wheat for December delivery rose 3½ cents to $4.38 a bushel in Chicago while Kansas City futures gained 4¢ to $4.40¼ a bushel.

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2. Old-Crop Corn Sales Rise in Week Through August 24; New-Crop Sales Strong

Old-crop corn sales jumped in the week that ended on August 24 while soybean sales plunged, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Corn sales for delivery in the 2016-2017 marketing year that ended yesterday totaled 188,400 metric tons, up 84% week-to-week. The biggest buyer was China, which bought 142,000 tons. Japan was second at 83,800 tons, Colombia took 63,000 tons, and Guatemala purchased 37,400 tons.

New-crop sales were reported at 804,200 metric tons, with unknown buyers taking 237,800 tons, Mexico taking 159,800 tons and Guatemala purchasing 114,900 tons, according to the USDA.

Soybean sales for the current marketing year totaled 123,200 tons, down considerably from the previous week.

China bought 209,900 tons, the Netherlands took 85,800 tons, Japan was in for 64,800 tons, Indonesia took 29,100 tons, and Bangladesh purchased 12,900 tons. The total would’ve been better if not for reductions of 253,500 tons from unknown buyers and 67,500 tons from Pakistan, the USDA said in a report.

Soybean sales for 2017-2018 came in at 1.56 million metric tons as unknown buyers took 1.13 million tons, China bought 158,000 tons, Thailand purchased 140,200 tons, and Taiwan took 52,900 tons.

Wheat sales for the marketing year that started on June 1 totaled 536,000 tons, up 39% week-to-week and 32% from the four-week average, according to the government.

Japan was the big buyer at 99,600 tons, the Philippines bought 83,500 tons, South Africa was in for 82,100 tons, Indonesia purchased 75,500 tons, and Mexico took 64,800 tons.  

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3. Remnants of Harvey Make Way Into Ohio River Valley, Bringing Flooding, Strong Winds

What’s left of Harvey is moving into the Ohio River Valley this morning, bringing heavy rainfall and flash flooding into parts of several states.

Flash floods and strong winds are expected in parts of Kentucky and Tennessee, which were hit yesterday as the storm moved north, the National Weather Service said in a report early Friday morning.

Southern Indiana and Ohio are also now in the path of Harvey, which left dozens dead and tens of thousands homeless after striking the Texas Gulf Coast a week ago.

Another 2 to 3 inches of rainfall is expected in a short time today following as much as 6 inches of rain in the past 24 hours, which has caused rivers and streams to breach their banks and flood low-lying areas including farmland and roadways. Drivers are being told to avoid attempting water crossings.

Wind gusts of up to 25 mph are also expected, according to the NWS.

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