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3 Big Things Today, April 9

Wheat Futures Lower Overnight; Export Inspections of Soybeans Rise Week to Week.

1. Wheat Futures Again Lower on Crop Prospects

Wheat futures were again lower in overnight trading after the USDA’s Crop Progress Report showed the winter crop was in much better condition than last year.

Some 60% of winter wheat was rated good or excellent as of April 7, up from 56% seven days earlier and 30% during the same week in 2018, the USDA said. In Kansas, the biggest grower of winter wheat, 58% earned top ratings.

About 3% of the crop was headed, down a tick from the prior five-year average of 4%.

Two percent of the corn crop was in the ground as of Sunday, on par with the average. The bulk was in Texas where just over half the crop was planted.

Some 1% of the spring wheat crop was planted, down from 5% on average for the past five years, the USDA said. Snowy and wet weather has kept farmers in the Dakotas out of fields thus far.

Wheat futures for May delivery declined 4¾¢ to $4.60½ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade, while Kansas City wheat dropped 4¢ to $4.27½ a bushel.

Soybeans for May delivery rose ¼¢ to $8.99 a bushel overnight. Soy meal fell 50¢ to $308.70 a short ton, and soy oil added 0.02¢ to 28.90¢ a pound.

Corn futures fell ¼¢ to $3.59¾ a bushel in Chicago.


2. Export Inspections of Soybeans, Wheat Rise Week to Week, Corn Declines

Export inspections of soybeans and wheat rose week to week, while corn assessments declined, according to the USDA.

The government said it inspected 888,160 metric tons of soybeans for overseas delivery in the seven days through April 5, up from 731,590 tons seven days earlier and 381,191 tons during the same week in 2018.

Wheat examinations last week totaled 538,808 metric tons, up from 454,287 the previous week and 431,876 tons at the same time last year, the agency said.

Corn inspections, meanwhile, declined to 1.035 million metric tons from 1.26 million tons in the prior seven days and 1.94 million tons the previous year.

Since the start of the marketing year on September 1, the USDA has inspected 30.7 million metric tons of corn for offshore delivery. That’s up from 26.5 million tons during the same time frame a year earlier.

Soybean inspections are well behind the year-ago pace at 30.2 million metric tons. At this point last year, the government had inspected 41.9 million tons, according to the agency.

Wheat assessments since the start of the grain’s marketing year on June 1 stand at 19.4 million metric tons, just behind the previous year’s pace of 20.4 million tons, the USDA said.


3. Strong Blizzard Expected in Parts of Nebraska, South Dakota; Up to 26 Inches Possible

Just when you thought winter was over, it makes another appearance.

A blizzard warning is in effect for western Nebraska, much of South Dakota, and parts of western Minnesota, according to the National Weather Service.

In South Dakota, a “potent spring storm” is set to move across the state starting today, the NWS said in a report early this morning.

“Rain will develop across the area today and this evening, then transition to snow late tonight into Wednesday morning,” the agency said. “Very heavy snow will then continue through the area during the day Wednesday, gradually ending Wednesday night and Thursday.”

Total snow accumulations of 9 to 15 inches are expected in the area with winds gusting up to 55 mph, the NWS said.

In central and western Nebraska, 20 to 26 inches of snow are in the forecast. The storm will hit the area starting tomorrow and continue through Friday. A light glaze of ice along with wind gusts of up to 50 mph also are expected, the agency said.

Travel is not advised in the affected areas.

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