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Friday Is Report Day, Ag Markets Slip Lower

Soybean and wheat markets dip, ahead of data.

DES MOINES, Iowa -- On Friday, the CME Group’s farm markets trade mostly lower.

In early trading, December corn futures are 1½¢ higher at $3.66¾; March futures are 1½¢ higher at $3.78.

November soybean futures are 4¢ lower at $8.51; January soybean futures are 4¼¢ lower at $8.64.

December wheat futures are 4¼¢ lower at $5.08.

December soy meal futures are 80¢ per short ton lower at $311.

December soy oil futures are 13¢ lower at 29.02¢ per pound.

In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil market is 11¢ higher, the U.S. dollar is higher, and the Dow Jones Industrials are 4 points higher.

Al Kluis, Kluis Advisors says that the grain prices found some support yesterday as the weekly export sales were pretty strong.

“It was rather quiet overnight session. Traders were getting prepared for the USDA quarterly Grain Stocks report,” Kluis stated in a daily note to customers.

He added, “Producers are reluctant to sell grain this fall due to big carries and very wide soybean basis levels. That lack of selling pressure is helping support grain prices in the near term.”

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Thursday’s Grain Market Review

On Thursday, the CME Group’s farm markets trade slightly higher as investors square up their positions ahead of tomorrow’s USDA reports.

At the close, December corn futures finished 1¾¢ higher at $3.64¾; March futures ended 1½¢ higher at $3.76½.

November soybean futures settled 5¢ higher at $8.55; January soybean futures finished 5¼¢ higher at $8.69.

December wheat futures closed 4¼¢ lower at $5.13.

December soy meal futures ended 90¢ per short ton higher at $311.80.

December soy oil futures closed 36¢ higher at 29.15¢ per pound.

In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil market is 65¢ higher, the U.S. dollar is higher, and the Dow Jones Industrials are 95 points higher.

Brian A. Rydlund, CHS Hedging market analyst, says the overnight session had been extremely quiet as the trade awaits USDA data tomorrow @ 11a.m. CT, the September stocks and small grain reports.

“Then export sales were announced and they were pretty stellar for most commodities, led by corn and futures prices firmed,” Rydlund says.
 
He added, “We continue to see short covering in the corn market as well as in the soybean market, since really late last week. That short covering could be tied to tomorrow’s report (why take the chance) and month-end, quarter-end squaring away of positions.”
 
Farmers try to harvest some corn, while they wait on bean fields to dry out, he says.

On Thursday, the USDA released market-friendly Weekly Export Sales Report figures for the week ending September 22, 2018.

Here are the totals:

  • Corn: 72 million metric tons vs. the trade’s expectations of between 950,000 and 1,300,000 mt 
  • Soybeans: 872,200 mt vs. the trade’s expectations of between 600,000 and 1,000,000 mt
  • Soybean meal: 659,200 mt vs. the trade’s expectations of between 100,000 and 400,000 mt
  • Wheat: 657,100 mt vs. the trade’s expectations of between 250,000 and 500,000 mt

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Wednesday’s Grain Market Review

On Wednesday, demand news helped the soybean market finish where it started; slightly higher.

At the close, December corn futures finished ¾¢ lower at $3.63; March futures closed ¾¢ lower at $3.75.

November soybean futures finished 4¼¢ higher at $8.50; January soybean futures finished 4¢ higher at $8.63¾.

December wheat futures ended 3¼¢ lower at $5.17½.

December soy meal futures closed $1.70 per short ton higher at $310.90.

December soy oil futures finished 14¢ higher at 28.79¢ per pound.

In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil market is 65¢ lower, the U.S. dollar is higher, and the Dow Jones Industrials are 16 points higher.

On Wednesday, USDA announced export sales of 671,934 metric tons of soybeans for delivery to Mexico during the 2018/2019 marketing year.

The marketing year for soybeans began September 1.

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Tuesday’s Grain Market Review

DES MOINES, Iowa -- On Tuesday, investors underpinned the soybean market.

At the close, December corn futures finished 3¼¢ higher at $3.63¾; March futures closed 3¼¢ higher at $3.75¾.

November soybean futures ended 4¾¢ higher at $8.45¾; January soybean futures finished 4½¢ higher at $8.59¾.

December wheat futures settled 6¼¢ lower at $5.20¾.

December soy meal futures finished $1.70 per short ton higher at $309.20.

December soy oil futures closed $0.13 higher at 28.65.

In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil market is 20¢ higher, the U.S. dollar is lower, and the Dow Jones Industrials are 47 points lower.

Mike North, president of Commodity Risk Management Group, says today's trade is operating in a void of fundamental information.  

“Chart trade was the primer for the large move higher in soybeans. The $8.50 level has served as stout resistance for nearby action. As the session reopened, a quick bid ran prices to that level. Once it was violated, a brief round of buying drove markets higher,” North says.  

From there the erosion was gradual, as sellers took an opportunity presented only once since August, North says.  

He added, “The corn found little to trade, while wheat ran into some technical resistance of its own. Ongoing winter wheat plantings have added some pressure to that situation, despite the ongoing concerns over global crop production and availability.”

Al Kluis, Kluis Advisors, says investors will be watching outside markets, along with harvest progress.

“The continued rally in crude oil is long-term bullish for the entire commodity complex,” Kluis stated in a daily note to customers.

He added, “The USDA Crop Progress Report on Monday showed nationwide corn harvest at 16% and soybean harvest at 14%. The 2018 crop harvest is going out very fast.”

On Tuesday, private exporters reported to the USDA export sales of 239,630 metric tons of corn for delivery to Mexico during the 2018/2019 marketing year.
The marketing year for corn began September 1.

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Monday’s Grain Market Review

Soybean futures closed lower on Monday as U.S. growers continue to collect what’s expected to be a record crop and after China over the weekend canceled planned talks with the U.S. negotiators. Grains finished higher. 

Prices last week rose almost 17¢ on speculation that the lowest prices in a decade would draw buyers including China despite the ongoing trade war between the countries. After last week’s gain, however, prices backed off as Commodity Futures Trading Commission data released Friday showed speculative investors held the biggest net-short position since January. 

U.S. growers are forecast to collect 4.693 billion bushels of soybeans this year on yields of 52.8 bushels an acre, both records. Stockpiles are forecast to more than double to 845 million bushels by the end of the marketing year that started on September 1, according to the USDA. 

China over the weekend nixed plans to meet with U.S. negotiators after the Trump administration last week imposed tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods. The duties go into effect today, as do levies on $60 billion worth of U.S. imports to China. 

Corn futures, however, were higher on signs of demand for U.S. grain. Corn sales in the seven days through September 13 totaled 1.38 million metric tons, topping a range of forecasts, and soybean sales came in at 917,600 tons, also beating expectations, according to the USDA. On Friday, the government reported sales of 121,700 metric tons of corn for delivery to unknown buyers during the 2018-2019 marketing year that started on September 1. 

Soybean futures for November delivery fell 6¾¢ to $8.40½ a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soybean meal lost $1.40 to $307.50 a short ton, and soy oil gained 0.15¢ to 28.49¢ a pound.

Corn futures for December delivery rose 3¾¢ to $3.61 a bushel.

December wheat jumped 4½¢ to $5.26¼ a bushel, while Kansas City futures gained 3¾¢ to $5.29 a bushel. 

In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil market rose 1.9% to $72.15 a barrel, the U.S. dollar fell 0.1%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.6% in late-day trading. 

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