Cash Grain Spotlight, Harvesttime Showers, Election Results
The midterm election came and went this week, one when harvest continued to chug along at a slower-than-average pace, and the grain markets fought to stay out of the red. See what else you need to know this week.
After the longest stretch of dry conditions in the Corn Belt since corn and soybean harvest began, spotty rainfall moved back into the weather picture this week. And, moving forward, a major cooldown's expected for next week, forecasters say.
Despite being behind the normal harvest pace for this time of the year, farmers made massive strides last week before showers moved in; now 2/3 of the corn crop's harvested and soybean harvest will likely be at or very near the finish line next week, according to USDA. How's your progress?
Though the dry weather has allowed a lot of harvest action in the last week, some farmers say their corn moisture is still on the high side, especially in northern parts of the Corn Belt. "Am I the only one struggling?" one farmer asked this week. How wet is your corn right now?
Moving into this fall, most expectations were for big corn and soybean crops and potential grain storage issues, resulting in corn piled up outside wherever it could be before delivery to the marketplace. That hasn't yet happened, and farmer sales have been limited because of it. Are you selling on the cash market right now?
One reason for price optimism for some of the grains is exports. Right now, sorghum exports are "on fire," and some say corn may have to "push to $5 to buy acres" for the 2015 crop. Do you agree?
The mid-term election happened Tuesday, ending what was a brutal campaign in many parts of the nation, including in farm country. So, what do the results of the election -- one that saw republicans regain control of both chambers of Congress -- mean to agriculture?
The relationship between the grain markets and other commodities in the overall asset picture is one thing in question after Tuesday's elections that prompted a downturn in the gold market. So, what's an ounce of gold buy these days? How many bushels of corn can you buy with an ounce of gold? Check out Al Kluis' latest column for the answer!
Beyond outside factors like gold, corn and soybean use and consumption remains a massive variable in pricing for the grains. "The risk to a further recovery in corn and soybean prices in the near term comes from the supply side," one economist said this week. Look for this to be influenced by big USDA reports next week.
As if you didn't have enough to do this fall...now there's a major pest you should probably be scouting this fall. Soybean cyst nematode (SCN) scouting is "part art and part science" and an important task to add to your fall to-do list, experts say.
Time may be tight for your Christmas and holiday shopping. If that's the case, let us do your shopping for you! Check out this year's Holiday Gift-Buying Guide for the farmer on your list, or use it to drop some hints of your own! Get it done early so you can kick back and relax!
Elections, harvest & gloomy markets are all big stories in agriculture this week.