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3 Big Things Today, December 13, 2019

Soybeans, Grains Jump Overnight on Trade Deal; Export Sales Surge Across the Board.

1. Soybeans, Grains Surge Overnight on U.S.-China Trade Deal

Soybeans and grains were higher in overnight trading after the U.S. and China finally came to a so-called Phase One trade deal yesterday.

President Trump last night agreed to the deal that would reportedly cut or curb existing tariffs and cancel implementation of a levy increase on $156 billion worth of goods from the Asian nation that was set to go into effect on Sunday.

China, meanwhile, will buy $50 billion worth of U.S. agricultural products next year along with other items and make other concessions, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing White House Adviser Michael Pillsbury.

The U.S. is widely expected to make an announcement about the deal today.

The limited deal brings to an end 18 months of tit-for-tat tariffs the countries – the world’s two largest economies – have imposed on each other’s goods. Still, if China doesn’t live up to its commitments, the U.S. could re-impose the levies, Pillsbury told The WSJ.

Soybean futures for January delivery jumped 12½¢ to $9.10¾ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soy meal added $3 to $297.20 a short ton, while soybean oil rose 0.27¢ to 32.50¢ a pound.

Corn futures for March delivery gained 5¢ to $3.82¾ a bushel.

Wheat for September delivery gained 2¾¢ to $5.33 a bushel, while Kansas City futures rose 5¼¢ to $4.48 a bushel.

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2. Weekly Export Sales Jump Across the Board as Wheat More Than Doubles

Export sales were higher week to week, led by wheat purchases that more than doubled, according to the USDA.

Corn sales in the seven days through December 5 were reported at 873,500 metric tons, up 60% from the previous week and 28% from the prior four-week period, the USDA said in a report. Analysts had expected sales from 400,000 to 800,000 tons, according to researcher Allendale.

Mexico was the biggest buyer at 517,200 metric tons. Japan took 176,700 tons, Canada was in for 104,900 tons, Colombia picked up 53,900 tons, and Panama purchased 49,900 tons from U.S. supplies.

An unknown buyer canceled shipments totaling 67,400 tons.

Soybean sales came in at 1.05 million metric tons, up 54% week to week but down 17% from the four-week average, the USDA said.

Analysts had expected sales from 500,000 to 1.1 million tons.

An unknown buyer purchased 251,400 metric tons, China bought 241,600 tons, Bangladesh took 175,900 tons, Japan was in for 89,500 tons, and Pakistan snapped up 70,000 tons.

Wheat sales surged to 502,700 metric tons from 228,086 tons the previous week, a 33% increase over the prior average, the agency said. Analysts had pegged sales from 200,000 to 450,000 tons.

Japan was the big buyer at 100,000 metric tons, followed by the Philippines at 85,900 tons, and Thailand at 74,000 tons. An unknown buyer took 64,100 metric tons and Indonesia was in for 57,000 tons, the USDA said in its report.

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3. Snow, Freezing Drizzle Expected in Parts of Eastern Nebraska, Iowa Heading Into Weekend

Snow and freezing drizzle are expected in parts of eastern Nebraska and much of Iowa today, according to the National Weather Service.

Minor snowfall is expected in western Iowa this morning, as is a light glaze of ice that will make roadways slick. Snow and ice are expected to reform late this evening and stick around overnight.

“Patchy, slick stretches may develop on area roads again late this evening,” the NWS said in a report early this morning.

Wind chills will drop as low as -15˚F. this weekend, and more snow may fall in the region Sunday, the agency said.

Farther east, some light freezing drizzle is expected in parts of northern Illinois tonight. Flurries that form over north-central Illinois likely won’t leave any snow accumulation.

Still, snow that falls Sunday into Monday likely will stick, though it’s unclear at this point how much will accumulate, the NWS said.

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