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3 Big Things Today, August 9

Soybeans, Corn Decline Overnight on Favorable Rain; Crop Progress Shows Rare Corn Rating Drop.

1. Soybean, Corn Futures Decline Overnight as More Rain Forecast

Soybeans and corn both declined overnight as favorable weather continues in the U.S. Midwest.

Rainfall is possible in some parts of northwestern Iowa, southwestern Minnesota, northeastern Nebraska, and several areas of South Dakota, the National Weather Service said in a report on Tuesday. Precipitation is also possible in dry parts of northern Indiana and southern Michigan, though there’s only a “slight chance,” the NWS said.

Prices had been rising overnight due to reports of overseas demand for U.S. inventories. Exporters reportedly sold about 3 million metric tons of soybeans to importers in the past week to 10 days, according to the Department of Agriculture.

The streak of sales continued as the USDA reported on Monday that exporters had sold 246,000 tons of soybeans and 162,569 tons of corn for delivery in the 2016-2017 marketing year.

Soybean futures for November delivery fell 5¾¢ to $9.79¼ a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soy meal futures for December delivery lost $3 to $329.40 a short ton, and soy oil gained 0.13¢ to 31.55¢ a pound.

Corn futures for December delivery fell 1¾¢ to $3.33 a bushel overnight.

Wheat futures for September delivery declined 3½¢ to $4.13½ a bushel in Chicago, while Kansas City wheat lost 1¢ to $4.08¾ a bushel.

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2. Corn Ratings Drop First Time This Year as Dry Ohio Brings Down Average

Corn ratings fell for the first time this year, as the driest parts of the Midwest brought down the average.

Conditions declined week over week by 2 percentage points to 74% good or excellent in the week that ended on Sunday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a report on Monday.

Ohio has missed out on much of the rain that’s benefited crops in the ‘I’ states (Iowa, Illinois, and to a lesser extent Indiana), causing corn conditions in the state to fall from 54% good or excellent to 47% in a single week, according to the USDA.

Michigan was another state that saw a significant decline in ratings, as the amount of corn receiving top ratings fell from 58% to 54%, according to the government.

Soybean ratings nationwide were unchanged week over week, though growers in Ohio were hurt by the lack of rain as conditions tanked from 58% good or excellent to 52% last week. In Illinois, however, some 79% of the crop earned top ratings, up from 77% the prior week, according to the USDA.

Crop ratings, as a whole, are pretty good this year: 74% of the U.S. corn crop is in good or excellent condition, while 72% of the soybean crop has earned top ratings. A point or two here or there isn’t going to make a difference at this point, but all eyes are still on the skies as soybeans are in a critical growth stage and could take a turn for the worse if dry weather sets in nationwide.

That, however, doesn’t appear likely as longer-term forecasts show rain is expected in much of the Midwest in the next six to 15 days.  

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3. Rain, Hot Weather Dominate National Maps

Heat and rain are again dominating the weather map this morning, as forecasters say slight to moderate chances of rain abound over the Corn Belt, and hot weather will keep parts of Kansas and Missouri steamy at least through the next couple of days.

Rain has been forecast in parts of Iowa, South Dakota, and Minnesota for this afternoon. A slight chance is predicted in some areas of eastern Iowa and western Illinois, according to the National Weather Service.

Some parts of Ohio, which have been extremely dry, also may get rain, though chances are only “slight,” the NWS said.

Heat will be the dominating feature in a thin stretch of land from eastern Kansas and western Missouri through the Texas Gulf Coast. Heat indexes are expected to top 110˚F., making any outside activity dangerous, according to the NWS.

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