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3 Big Things Today, March 27

Wheat Futures Lower Overnight; Money Managers Not Fans of Ags Lately.

1. Wheat Lower Overnight on Rain in Southern Plains

Wheat futures were lower in overnight trading after some rain fell over the weekend in winter wheat country.

Up to 2 inches of rain fell in some parts of the Southern Plains in the past 72 hours, according to the National Weather Service.

Small amounts of precipitation fell Saturday in much of western Kansas and the Oklahoma and Texas panhandles. Much of central and eastern Kansas and Oklahoma and much of eastern Texas saw rain on Sunday, according to the NWS.

Prior to this weekend, the region had little or no rain for much of the past 45 days, weather maps show.

Wheat futures for May delivery fell 2¢ to $4.22¾ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Kansas City wheat lost 2¾¢ to $4.25¼ a bushel.

Corn futures were little changed, gaining ½¢ to $3.56¾ a bushel in Chicago.

Soybean futures fell 2¼¢ to $9.73½ a bushel. Soy meal lost a dime to $318.10 a short ton, and soy oil fell 0.31¢ to 31.92¢ a pound.

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2. Speculators Raise Bets Against Higher Corn Prices to Largest Level Since January 3

Speculative investors were net-short corn by the largest level since the first week of the year, according to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

Net-short positions, or bets on lower prices, in the seven days that ended on March 21 totaled 84,118 contracts, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission said in a report. That’s the largest such position since the week ended January 3.

Soybean net-long positions, or bets on higher prices, fell to the lowest level since September, according to the CFTC. Investors were net-long by 60,639 contracts last week, the lowest level since September 27. 

Large global production is keeping many money managers and other large specs nervous about prospects for rising prices in agriculture commodities.

Investors were net-short soft red winter wheat by 133,166 contracts, the biggest such position since October, and net-long hard red winter wheat by 15,308 contracts, the lowest level since early January, according to data from the CFTC.

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3. More Rain Expected to Fall in Much of Southern Plains

More rain is expected in the Southern Plains this week as storms will move through starting on Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service.

The storms will be accompanied by winds and potential hail, but the risk of severe weather is, at the most, only slight, the agency said.

“Expect more thunderstorms on Tuesday and Tuesday night,” the NWS said in a forecast early Monday. “All parts of the Texas and Oklahoma panhandles will have good prospects for beneficial rains. Severe thunderstorms will be possible, mainly across the southeast and east-central Texas panhandle.”

Elsewhere, thunderstorms are possible in parts of southern Michigan, northern Indiana, and northwestern Ohio tonight. Rain is likely mainly south of Highway 30, and severe storms are not expected, according to the weather service.

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