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3 Big Things Today, April 1, 2020

Soybeans, Grains Decline Overnight; Corn Planting Seen Well Above Expectations.

1. Soybeans and Grains Decline in Overnight Trading

Soybeans plunged and corn was lower overnight after the USDA said it expects an increase in plantings this year.

Area dedicated to soybeans is expected to surge 10% year over year, while corn acreage is forecast to increase by 8%, the USDA said in a report on Tuesday.

That pressured prices that were already teetering on the edge due to the continued uncertainty about demand due to COVID-19.

The number of cases globally has jumped to 873,767 with the death toll now topping 43,300, according to Johns Hopkins University. That’s up from 788,522 cases and 37,878 deaths yesterday.

In the U.S., the number of cases is now at 189,633, up from 164,610 a day earlier. The death toll now stands at about 3,800, up from just over 3,000 yesterday.

Soybean futures for May delivery fell 9¾¢ to $8.76¼ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soy meal dropped $2.80 to $318.70 a short ton, and soy oil declined 0.10¢ to 26.77¢ a pound.

Corn futures fell 1¾¢ to $3.39 a bushel overnight.

Wheat futures for May delivery lost 8¢ to $5.60¾ a bushel, while Kansas City futures declined 4½¢ to $4.88½ a bushel.


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2. Corn Acreage Expected to Rise 8% and Soybean Area Forecast to Jump 10%, USDA Says

Producers plan to plant more corn and fewer beans than expected this year.

Corn acres are pegged at about 97 million, an 8% increase year over year, according to the USDA. That’s also ahead of the analyst forecast compiled by Bloomberg for 94.1 million acres.

Soybean area is seen at about 83.5 million acres, a 10% year-over-year jump, the USDA said, but behind expectations for 85 million acres.

Wheat planted area is forecast at 44.7 million acres, a 1% decline from the previous year. Analysts had pegged wheat area at 45 million acres.

The USDA also released its Grain Stocks Report on Tuesday.

Corn and wheat stocks on March 1 were lower than expected, while bean inventories topped forecasts.

Stockpiles of corn at the start of last month totaled 7.95 billion bushels, according to the government. That’s an 8% decline from the same date a year earlier and behind expectations for 8.13 billion bushels.

Wheat inventories were reported at 1.41 billion bushels, the USDA said, an 11% drop from the previous year and just behind expectations for 1.43 billion bushels.

Bean stocks, meanwhile, came in at 2.25 billion bushels, a 17% plunge from a year earlier, the agency said in its report. That was ahead of forecasts for 2.23 billion bushels.


3. Winter Weather Warnings and Watches Are in Effect For Much of the Dakotas

Winter weather is bearing down on the Dakotas this morning as winter storm warnings, weather advisories and storm watches have been issued in the states.

 A winter storm warning is in effect until 7 p.m. CDT for parts of northwestern North Dakota as up to 8 inches of snow are forecast, according to the National Weather Service.

Wind gusts of 35 mph are expected, the NWS said in a report this morning.

The western halves of North Dakota and South Dakota will be under a winter weather advisory starting tonight as mixed precipitation is in the forecast.

As much as 5 inches of snow are expected along with a light glaze of ice.

In the eastern halves of the states, heavy mixed precipitation is likely starting tomorrow morning with up to 3 inches of snow and two-tenths of an inch of ice likely, the NWS said.

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