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3 Big Things Today, December 2, 2019

Soybeans, Grains Little Changed Overnight; Weekly Export Sales Higher Across the Board.

1. Soybeans, Grains Little Changed on Stalled China Talks

Soybeans and grains were little changed in overnight trading as investors await any news on the U.S.-China trade war.

Negotiations are being complicated by the U.S.’s stance on Hong Kong, Axios reported, while sources told the Global Times over the weekend that China is waiting for Washington to remove existing tariffs instead of just planned tariffs.

The Global Times is a Chinese state newspaper.

If a deal isn’t reached, the U.S. is set to impose an additional 15% tariffs on more than $150 billion worth of Chinese goods.

Buoying prices were solid export sales figures on Friday as the report was released a day later than normal due to the Thanksgiving holiday.

Soybean futures for January delivery rose 2¼¢ to $8.79 a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soy meal rose 60¢ a short ton to $293.70, while soybean oil rose 0.05¢ to 30.63¢ a pound.

Corn futures for December delivery rose ¼¢ to $3.81½ a bushel.

Wheat for September delivery fell ¾¢ to $5.41 a bushel, while Kansas City futures dropped 2¼¢ to $4.44¾ a bushel.

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2. Export Sales of Corn, Wheat, Beans All Improve Week to Week, USDA Says

Export sales of corn, soybeans, and wheat all rose week to week in the seven days that ended on November 21, the USDA said in a report that was delayed a day due to Thanksgiving.

Corn sales were reported at 806,800 metric tons, up 2% from the previous week and 34% from the prior four-week average, the agency said in a report.

Colombia was the biggest buyer at 262,600 metric tons, an unknown buyer took 153,700 tons, and Costa Rica was in for 101,700 tons. Mexico bought 87,900 metric tons and Canada purchased 86,000 tons of U.S. corn.

Soybean sales surged 14% week to week to 1.66 million metric tons, the USDA said. The total is up 25% from the previous average.

China was the top buyer at 831,200 metric tons, Germany bought 124,300 tons, Indonesia was in for 112,700 tons, Taiwan took 99,800 tons, and Egypt purchased 74,400 tons. An unknown customer canceled cargoes of 48,000 tons, the government said.

Wheat sales were reported last week at 612,700 metric tons, up 40% from the prior week and 60% from the average, the USDA said.

The Philippines purchased 194,600 metric tons, Taiwan was in for 95,700 tons, Japan took 65,800 tons, Bangladesh bought 60,600 tons, and Guatemala was in for 46,300 tons.

Since the start of the marketing year on September 1, corn sales to overseas buyers now stand at 14.1 million metric tons, down 45% from the same period a year earlier, the government said.

Soybean sales, however, are up 9% year over year to 25.3 million tons.

Wheat sales since the grain’s marketing year started on June 1 are now at 16.2 million metric tons, up 8% from the same point in 2018, the USDA said.

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3. Slick Roads Expected in Parts of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Minnesota; Fire Danger in Kansas

Cold weather following precipitation in much of central Minnesota and western Wisconsin will lead to slick roads this morning, according to the National Weather Service.

“Cold temperatures and residual moisture have resulted in ice forming on some area roads early this morning,” the NWS said in a report early this morning. “Bridges, overpasses, and less-traveled back roads will be most prone to having slick spots. Be extra cautious while driving this morning, especially when approaching bridges and overpasses.”

Farther east in Michigan, freezing fog is expected tonight, which also could make travel dangerous, the agency said.

In the Southern Plains, meanwhile, parts of southwestern Kansas will see an increased chance of wildfires due to low humidity and strong winds.

Humidity values in southwestern Kansas will be as low as 20% this afternoon, which along with winds of up to 20 mph will create tinderbox-like conditions, the NWS said.

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