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3 Big Things Today, May 29
1. Grains, Beans Surge as Rain Stalls Planting
Corn, soybeans, and wheat all surged overnight as a government report showed wet weather kept farmers out of fields last week.
About 58% of the U.S. corn crop was planted as of Sunday, down from the prior five-year average of 90%, according to the USDA.
In Iowa, 76% of the crop was in the ground, down from the average of 96% for this time of year, the USDA said in a report. Illinois growers were only 35% finished with seeding compared with the normal 95% for the week.
Soybean planting was 29% finished as of Sunday, well behind the average pace of 66%. Iowa growers were 32% finished vs. the normal 77%, while Illinois planting was 14% done compared with the average of 70%, the government said.
Thunderstorms that are bringing enough rain to cause continued flooding are hitting the Midwest again this week, leaving little hope that planting will accelerate anytime soon.
Six times the normal amount of rain has fallen in much of the Midwest, Northern Plains, and Southern Plains in the past 14 days, the NWS said.
Corn futures for May delivery jumped 16½¢ to $4.36¾ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade.
Soybeans for May delivery added 31¢ to $8.87 a bushel. Soy meal rose $11.70 to $324.50 a short ton, and soy oil gained 0.70¢ to 27.99¢ a pound.
Wheat for May delivery was up 15¢ to $5.19¾ a bushel in Chicago, while Kansas City wheat gained 18¢ to $4.78¾ a bushel.
2. Export Inspections of Corn, Beans, Rise Week to Week, Wheat Assessments Decline
Export inspections of corn and beans rose week to week, while wheat assessments declined.
The USDA inspected 1.1 million metric tons of corn in the week that ended on May 23 for delivery to overseas buyers, up from 840,474 tons the previous week.
Still, that’s down from the 1.71 million tons examined during the same week a year earlier.
Soybean assessments last week totaled 532,881 metric tons, ahead of the previous week’s 498,122 tons, the USDA said. That’s down from the 581,422 tons inspected at the same time last year.
Government inspections of wheat totaled 494,097 metric tons in the seven days through May 23, well below the previous week’s 838,956 tons but up from the 446,209 tons assessed at this time last year, according to the government.
Since the start of the marketing year on September 1, the USDA has inspected 38.6 million metric tons of corn, up from 38 million during the same time frame last year.
Soybean inspections since the beginning of September are now at 33.7 million tons, well behind last year’s 46.2 million tons. The lack of Chinese buying has made a big dent in export inspections.
Since the start of the grain’s marketing year on June 1, government officials inspected 24.2 million metric tons of wheat for overseas delivery, up slightly from the 23.5 million tons assessed during the same period last year, the USDA said.
3. More Rain on the Way For Parts of Corn Belt as Storms Continue to Rage
It sounds like a broken record – for those who remember records – but more rainfall is expected in parts of the Midwest and Southern Plains today.
Flood warnings, flash flood watches, and hazardous weather warnings are in effect in several parts of the country including Oklahoma, Missouri, and Illinois, according to the National Weather Service.
In central Illinois, widespread rain associated with thunderstorms fell overnight, dropping several inches of rain overnight. With the ground already saturated, flash flooding is occurring in several parts of the state, the NWS said.
Flood warnings are also in effect in parts of eastern Oklahoma, western Arkansas, and southern Missouri this morning, as are severe thunderstorm warnings.
“Storms developing across west Texas this morning will spread northeast toward Oklahoma by later this morning,” the NWS said. “Meanwhile, a front now across northwest Oklahoma will slowly sag across eastern Oklahoma.”
Thunderstorm activity will increase throughout the day along the Interstate 44 corridor and push east, the agency said. Scattered, strong storms are expected this afternoon that could produce large hail, damaging winds, and tornadoes.