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Volatilty Rules This Week’s Ag Markets, Analyst Says

Soybean prices swing 60¢ this week.

Recent activity in the agriculture sector of commodities has certainly picked up in recent weeks, as impactful USDA reports and news events have pushed prices in strong directions.

The most recent is a surprise reduction in both corn and soybean acres on the March 29 acreage estimate. This was followed by tariff news last week regarding a limited number of commodities, which included pork, and then China’s list this week of over 100 commodities to incur tariffs, with soybeans at the top of the list.

Weather has been impactful, as well. Bottom line: volatility is picking up, and with increased volatility comes increased risk and opportunity.

The bean market has been very volatile in recent weeks. As of this writing, this week has experienced a high in November soybean futures at $10.60 and a low of $9.97¾, a range of over 60¢.

Corn futures have been volatile, as well, with December corn futures trading as high as $4.16 and as low as $3.96 within a three-day window.

Livestock prices have been on a steep downturn, as concerns of high supply and tariffs against pork sent prices reeling. Yet, on April 4, futures posted large bullish key reversals. May feeder cattle experienced a daily trading range of near $7.00.

Weather is becoming more of a factor for 2018 crops, as a drawdown in Argentina’s corn and soybean crops suggest tightening world inventory.

The investment community noticed soybeans, with managed money going from near-record short to near-record large in just a matter of weeks. Politics are now looming large as trade war rhetoric increases.

With volatility, the opportunity to sell rallies and buy price breaks increases. Both buyers and sellers will likely have opportunities. They need to pay attention and take advantage when opportunity comes knocking.

Now is the time to sharpen your pencil and reexamine your marketing strategies for the year ahead, before you get into the field. Make sure you have a well balanced approach. Use a combination of marketing tools such as forward contracting, hedge to arrive, futures, and options. Learn which tools are best suited for you and learn how to implement these with confidence.


If you have questions or comments, or want help developing your own marketing toolbox, contact Top Farmer at 1-800-TOPFARM, ext. 129. Ask for Bryan Doherty.

Futures trading is not for everyone. The risk of loss in trading is substantial. Therefore, carefully consider whether such trading is suitable for you in light of your financial condition. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results.

Carol Tillmann 
Front Desk Administrative Assistant | Stewart-Peterson
Office: 800.334.9779 | Fax: 262.334.6225

Futures and options trading involve significant risk of loss and may not be suitable for everyone. Therefore, carefully consider whether such trading is suitable for you in light of your financial condition. Hypothetical performance results have many inherent limitations. No representation is being made that any account will or is likely to achieve profits or losses similar to those shown. No representation is being made that scenario planning, strategy or discipline will guarantee success or profits. The data contained herein is believed to be drawn from reliable sources but cannot be guaranteed. Reproduction of this information without prior written permission is prohibited. This material has been prepared by a sales or trading employee or agent of Stewart-Peterson and is, or is in the nature of, a solicitation. Any decisions you may make to buy, sell or hold a futures or options position on such research are entirely your own and not in any way deemed to be endorsed by or attributed to Stewart-Peterson. Stewart-Peterson refers to Stewart-Peterson Group Inc. and Stewart-Peterson Inc. Stewart-Peterson Group Inc. is registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) as an introducing broker and is a member of National Futures Association. Stewart-Peterson Inc. is a publishing company. A customer may have relationships with both companies. Accordingly this email is sent on behalf of the company or companies providing the services discussed in the email.

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