Oil & Russian Wheat Drive Grain Markets As Year Winds Down

  • 01

    Russia's economy is headed toward recession and the crude oil market's headed lower (despite a midweek rebound this week). Both are starting to lean on the U.S. grain markets in different directions. Meanwhile, farmers are getting welcome tax relief...if they act quickly. See what else is big this week.

  • 02

    Crude oil has gotten a ton of headlines this week, namely in that market's dramatic fall and speculation when it's going to turn back around. A turnaround in the last few days has some analysts saying it's time for farmers to start to lock in some of their 2015 fuel needs. What do you think?

  • 03

    Another huge issue this week is the unfolding economic downturn in Russia. Currency devaluation has the nation's leaders implementing export restrictions as markets like crude oil move lower, likely leading to a recession. But, those dynamics could be bullish for U.S. wheat futures, analysts say.

  • 04

    There's been one more big overseas story that could influence the U.S. grain markets soon. Chinese officials have signed off on a key GMO trait -- Syngenta's Agrisure Viptera -- for import, which could lead to an increase in U.S. corn exports to China.

  • 05

    These factors have made for some "odd bedfellows in the grains," one analyst said this week. "We have a dichotomy developing in the commodities sector, with grains rallying since October and crude oil dropping precipitously during that time," says Ray Grabanski. "It is an odd mix of price signals!"

  • 06

    Despite these conflicting signals, there's reason to believe in the corn and soybean bulls moving into 2015. Why? Corn acres will likely slip in the next year, and that will help keep the grain market downturn from happening too sharply, 2 Illinois economists said at a meeting this week. See what else they said.

  • 07

    More big news that could affect your farm's bottom line this week, if you're looking at buying any big-ticket items for your farm in the next couple of weeks: The Senate approved an extension of the IRS Section 179 tax deduction for business machinery, equipment and software up to half a million dollars. But, you have to act fast to make it happen.

  • 08

    Looking to upgrade your equipment to take advantage of the Section 179 deduction by the end of the year, but want to stay on the cutting edge? Check out the top 10 machinery innovations of the last year from our Machinery team. What's high on your list?

  • 09

    If your shopping worries are more geared toward what goes under your Christmas tree than what goes in your farm shop, you better get moving quickly! If you're shopping for a farmer, or you want to drop any last-minute hints yourself, here's the place to start!

  • 10

    If you're clicking around doing some last-minute Christmas gift shopping, maybe you need a soundtrack to get you in the mood? If so, you're in luck! Check out our staff's picks for music to set the mood for all your holiday plans this year!

It's been a volatile week in some market sectors as farmers get welcome news on the tax front.

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