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3 Big Things Today, September 21

Soybeans Lower Overnight; Cargill Says 10% of Revenues Locked Into NAFTA.

1. Soybeans Lower After Meeting Technical Resistance, Fundamentals Unchanged

Soybeans were lower in overnight trading mostly on technical indicators as fundamentals haven’t changed in the past several days.

Soybeans are seeing resistance at the 100-day moving average level of $9.69 a bushel. Futures yesterday were stopped at the 200-day moving average at $9.79 a bushel, said Tomm Pfitzenmaier, the president of Summit Commodity Brokerage in Des Moines,Iowa.

If the market could get through that level, he said, it could move even higher, as demand has been strong and expectations are for disappointing yields once the soybean harvest starts in earnest.

Corn and wheat, meanwhile, were little changed as yield uncertainty dominates trading.

Soybeans for November delivery fell 6¼¢ to $9.63¾ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soy meal futures lost 70¢ to $309.40 a short ton, and soy oil declined 0.43¢ to 34.48¢ a pound.

Corn for December delivery fell ¾¢ to $3.49¼ a bushel overnight.

Wheat for December delivery declined 1½¢ to $4.48¼ a bushel in Chicago, while Kansas City futures lost a penny to $4.47 a bushel.

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2. Cargill CEO Says NAFTA Worth 10% of Company’s Revenues, Benefits Industry

Negotiations on the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, have been moving quickly, participants said earlier this week, and that’s good news for at least one major agriculture company.

Cargill Chief Executive David MacLennan said yesterday at a forum in New York that about 10% of its revenues are related to NAFTA. That works to about $11 billion, as Cargill’s 2017 fiscal revenue was reported at $109.7 billion.

MacLennan said the company is watching the negotiations very closely and that the agreement has provided benefits to not only Cargill but also the ag industry as a whole. That said, it could use some improvements, he said.

The worst thing that could happen would be to “tear up” the agreement, MacLennan told Reuters.

The CEO’s thoughts aren’t a surprise. USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue said late last month at an ag industry event in Illinois that he’s trying to convince President Donald Trump that NAFTA is good for agriculture despite having some rough edges.

While Trump understands concerns from agriculture, he’s concerned about trade deficits in other areas including automobiles and manufacturing, Perdue said at the industry event.

The next round of NAFTA talks starts on September 23 in Ottawa following discussions held earlier in Washington and Mexico City.

U.S. agricultural exports to Mexico last year were worth about $18 billion, led by $2.6 billion in corn, $1.5 billion in soybeans, and $1.3 billion in pork, USDA data show. Shipments to Canada were worth about $20.5 billion, led by $3.5 billion in prepared foods, $2.4 billion in vegetables, and $2.4 billion in fruit. Pork and beef exports to the country accounted for more than $1.5 billion in shipments, according to the USDA.

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3. Hurricane Maria Heads North After Hitting Puerto Rico; Midwest Thunderstorms Possible

Hurricane Maria tore through Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands yesterday leaving death and destruction in its wake.

The storm is expected to turn north and miss Florida as it skirts the East Coast, according to the National Hurricane Center. Still, extremely large swells from Maria will cause rip currents along Atlantic beaches through early next week, the NWS said.

In the Midwest, there’s a slight risk for thunderstorms in northern states starting today and continuing through Saturday with the primary threats being strong winds and hail.

The region stretching from the Central Plains into west Texas are also at risk for some severe weather, according to the agency.  

In parts of Missouri, the weather is going to be extremely hot today with heat indexes well into the high 90s on Friday. Temperatures are expected to cool into the lower and middle 90s on Saturday.

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