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3 Big Things Today, July 11

Grains, Beans Lower in Overnight Trading; Crop Ratings Decline More Than Expected.

1. Wheat Futures Decline as Investors Book Profits Ahead of Reports

Grain and soybean prices fell overnight on another round of profit-taking ahead of tomorrow’s USDA reports.

The USDA will release its World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates Report along with Crop Production and World Agricultural Production Reports on Wednesday.

Investors who were long the market, or had bet on higher prices, are liquidating their positions ahead of the reports in case of any bearish surprises, analysts said.

Fundamentally, nothing’s changed overnight. It’s still dry in the Northern Plains, and the price decline this morning goes against conventional wisdom after the USDA said crop conditions fell more than expected across the board last week.

Wheat for September delivery fell 5½¢ to $5.44½ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Kansas City futures declined 6½¢ to $5.50¾ a bushel.

Soybeans for November delivery lost 11¼¢ to $10.28 a bushel overnight. Soy meal fell $3.10 to $342.50 a short ton, and soy oil futures declined 0.35¢ to 33.82¢ a pound.

December corn dropped 7¢ to $4.07¾ a bushel overnight.


2. Corn, Soybean Conditions Worse Than Expected, Spring Wheat Declines Continue

Corn and soybean conditions were worse than expected, while spring wheat ratings continue their decline.

About 65% of the U.S. corn crop was in good or excellent condition as of Sunday, down from 68% the prior week, according to the Department of Agriculture, and expectations for 67%. About 19% of the crop is silking.

About 62% of soybeans earned top ratings this week, down 2 percentage points week to week, the USDA said. Analysts had expected 63%.

About 34% of the crop is blooming, up from 18% a week ago and the five-year average of 32%, and 7% is setting pods, just ahead of average.

Only 35% of the spring wheat crop was rated good or excellent, down from 37% last week, according to the USDA. The hot, dry weather in the Northern Plains is taking its toll on the crop and likely will begin to affect corn and soybeans soon, forecasters have said.

About 79% of the spring crop is headed, ahead of the average of 74% and last week’s 59%, the government said.

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3. Heat Advisories Issued South Dakota Through Missouri With Heat Indexes of 108˚F.

Heat advisories have been issued for much of eastern South Dakota and a wide patch of land stretching from west-central Nebraska into central Missouri.

Temperatures in South Dakota may reach 101˚F. with a heat index of 105˚F. today, according to the National Weather Service.

Farther south in Nebraska, Iowa, and Missouri, temperatures will reach the mid-90s with indexes as high as 108˚F., the NWS said in a report early Tuesday.

Severe thunderstorms are expected in parts of Wisconsin, Indiana, and Ohio this afternoon. Damaging winds, large hail, heavy rainfall, and flooding are all possible with the storms, the agency said.

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