3 Big Things Today, January 4, 2021

Soybeans, Grains Jump Overnight; Export Sales Higher Across the Board.

1. Soybean and Grain Futures Surge in Overnight Trading

Soybeans were up more than 30¢ and corn and wheat also jumped in the first overnight session of 2021.

Argentina’s agriculture ministry said it would suspend corn exports until the end of February to ensure it had ample domestic supplies, while dry weather continues to worry traders.

Russia in December said it would put a quota on wheat exports to ensure ample domestic food supply.

The southeastern two-thirds of Argentina is under stress while a third of Brazilian soybeans are facing unfavorable weather, according to Commodity Weather Group.

Argentina is expected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to export 7 million metric tons of soybeans in the 2020-2021 marketing year, making it the third-largest shipper of the oilseeds. That’s down from almost 10 million a year earlier, the USDA said in its monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report last month.

Brazil, the world’s biggest exporter of soybeans, is forecast to ship 85 million metric tons while the U.S. is expected to export almost 60 million tons.

Argentina also is expected to ship 34 million metric tons of corn, while Brazil’s corn exports are seen at 39 million tons and U.S. shipments are pegged at 67.3 million tons, the USDA said.

Wheat exports from Argentina are forecast at 12.5 million metric tons vs. U.S. exports of 26.8 million tons, the agency said. Brazil isn’t a large shipper of wheat.  

Soybean futures for January delivery jumped 32¾¢ to $13.43¾ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soymeal added $7.90 to $437.30 a short ton, and soy oil gained 1.49¢ to 43.89¢ a pound.

Corn futures for March delivery were up 9¾¢ to $4.93¾ a bushel overnight.

Wheat futures for March delivery gained 6¼¢ to $6.46¾ a bushel, while Kansas City futures added 6¢ to $6.09½ a bushel.

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2. Export Sales Higher Across the Board Week-to-Week

Export sales of corn, wheat, and beans all surged in the week through Dec. 24, according to the USDA.

Sales of corn to overseas buyers were up 48% week-to-week to 964,500 metric tons, the agency said in a report. That’s still down 27% from the prior four-week average.

An unnamed country was the big buyer at 246,000 metric tons, followed by Japan at 117,400 tons, Costa Rica at 102,200 tons, and Morocco at 60,900 tons. Exports totaled 1.34 million metric tons, up 60% week-to-week and a marketing-year high.

Wheat sales improved 32% from the previous week and 4% from the average, the USDA said.

China bought 133,200 metric tons, the Philippines took 80,9000 tons, Vietnam was in for 77,500 tons, Indonesia purchased 57,000 tons and Bangladesh bought 50,800 tons. An unknown country canceled shipments for 23,000 tons.

Exports were reported at 434,800 metric tons, a 19% increase from the previous week.

Soybean sales came in at 695,400 metric tons, almost double the previous week’s total and a 25% increase from the four-week average.

China purchased 619,700 metric tons, Egypt was in for 91,800 tons, the Netherlands took 88,600 tons, and Thailand bought 78,000 tons, the agency said.

Unknown destinations, however, nixed cargoes totaling 588,100 metric tons. Exports fell 3% week-to-week to 2.44 million metric tons, the USDA said in its report.

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3. Dense Fog Warnings Stretching From Kansas Through Wisconsin in Effect

A dense fog warning has been issued for a large chunk of land stretching from eastern Kansas north to the Lake Michigan shoreline in Wisconsin, according to the National Weather Service.

In Missouri and extreme eastern Kansas, visibility overnight fell to less than a quarter mile, with freezing temperatures potentially causing slick roads, the NWS said in a report early this morning.

The same conditions are forecast for parts of Iowa, northern Illinois, and in Wisconsin, the agency said.

In central Nebraska, meanwhile, more winter weather is expected starting tomorrow and lasting into Wednesday.

Parts of north-central Nebraska may see up to 2 inches of snow and gusty winds of about 25 mph, the NWS said.

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