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3 Big Things Today, February 8

Soybeans Higher, Wheat Lower Overnight; Ethanol Output Rises, WASDE on Tap.

1. Soybeans Higher, Wheat Lower Ahead of WASDE Report

Soybeans were higher in overnight trading while wheat was lower, likely on position squaring ahead of today’s World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) Report.

Not much is expected in terms of change to the balance sheet, especially in the U.S., but some alterations may come to South American production given the weather volatility there in recent months.

U.S. corn stockpiles are expected to be down slightly from last month in the USDA report, while soybean carryout will likely be higher, according to analyst surveys.

Brazilian corn output is expected to drop modestly from the January report, while Brazil’s production will reportedly rise. Argentina’s corn production also is expected to decline a bit, as is the USDA’s projection on soybean output, the surveys show.

Soybean futures for March delivery rose 2½¢ to $9.84½ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soymeal futures rose $1.20 to $336.60 a short ton, and soy oil was unchanged at 32.56¢ a pound.

March corn was unchanged at $3.65¼ a bushel in Chicago.

Wheat for March delivery fell 3½¢ to $4.57 a bushel in overnight trading. Kansas City futures declined 2½¢ to $4.78½ a bushel.

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2. Ethanol Production Jumps After Falling Prior Week; WASDE, Export Sales Due Thursday

Ethanol production jumped again after a big decline the prior week, while stockpiles also increased.

Output of the biofuel was reported at 1.057 million barrels in the week that ended on Febrary 2, according to the Energy Information Administration. That’s up from 1.04 million barrels a week earlier.

Inventories came in at 23.489 million barrels, up from 23.045 million a week earlier, the EIA said in a weekly report.

In other news, it’s going to be a busy day with the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) Report and the Export Sales Report coming out.

Traders aren’t expecting much change from last month’s WASDE, but there may be some reductions in the South American corn estimates that could ultimately lower world carryout, said Tomm Pfitzenmaier, the president of Summit Commodity Brokerage in Des Moines.

In the weekly Export Sales Report, corn sales are pegged from 1.3 million to 1.8 million metric tons, soybean sales are expected from 400,000 to 700,000 tons, and wheat sales are forecast from 200,000 to 500,000 tons, according to Allendale.  

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3. Another Round of Snow Starting Today Expected to Stretch From Montana Through Michigan

Another storm system will slam much of the upper Plains and Midwest starting today, according to the National Weather Service.

Weather maps show the storm will stretch from extreme western Montana east through Michigan. Snowfall totals in Montana today, where winter storm warnings, high wind warnings, and wind chill advisories are in effect, will total as much as 8 inches, mostly this evening, the NWS said in a report early Thursday.

As much as 11 inches are expected in isolated areas.

In Iowa and Illinois, up to 8 inches of snow are also possible, the agency said. Most of the snow will start tonight and continue through tomorrow morning. Travel is not advised.

“A band of snow is expected to develop and spread into parts of eastern Iowa and far northwestern Illinois by late this afternoon,” the NWS said. “The snow will become heavy at times tonight, with periods of snow, then will continue through the day on Friday.”

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