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3 Big Things Today, July 26

Grains, Beans Higher Overnight; Spring Wheat Tour Finds Lower Yields on Day One.

1. Grains, Beans Higher Overnight on Bargain Hunting After Sell-off

Grains and beans were higher amid bargain hunting after yesterday’s big sell-off.

Corn lost more than 8¢, soybeans were down 17¼¢ and wheat declined 14¢ on Tuesday amid more favorable weather conditions and fund liquidation, analysts said. Some investors feel prices are now below fair value with corn below $3.90, beans off the $10 mark, and wheat again less than $5 a bushel.

Prices rebounded, though not taking back nearly what they lost yesterday, in overnight trading as the hot, dry weather in much of the Midwest the past couple of weeks still took a toll on crops.

Conditions through Sunday for corn, beans, and wheat all declined further than expected, according to the USDA.  

Corn for December delivery rose a penny to $3.83¼ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade.

Soybeans for November delivery rose 4¢ to $9.96¾ a bushel overnight. Soy meal gained $1.10 to $326 a short ton, and soy oil futures added 0.23¢ to 34.20¢ a pound.

Wheat for September delivery added 5¼¢ to $4.79¼ a bushel overnight, and Kansas City futures gained 5¼¢ to $4.78 a bushel.

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2. Spring Wheat Tour Shows Lower Yields in Eastern Third of North Dakota

The Wheat Quality Council’s annual Spring Wheat Tour started yesterday in North Dakota, and, as expected, the first day’s findings were well below last year’s.

About 70 crop scouts roamed southern North Dakota and slivers of Minnesota and South Dakota on Tuesday and pegged yields in the region at 37.9 bushels an acre, down from last year’s first-day total of 43.1 bushels an acre.

Some fields were reportedly cut for hay already, as the crop was a bust due to extremely hot and dry weather for much of the summer.

Still, the eastern third of North Dakota has received the most rain of any part of the state in the past 60 days, according to maps from the National Weather Service, which may mean these are the best yields the tour will find.

Precipitation totals in the eastern third of the state range from about 75% to 125% of normal, whereas the western two-thirds rainfall was mostly about 50% of normal with some spots as low as 25% of normal, according to the National Weather Service.

The western half of North Dakota is in an extreme drought with a small patch in the southwestern part of the state in an exceptional drought, the worst rating on the U.S. Drought Monitor’s scale. Much of the eastern third of the state is in a moderate drought or abnormally dry, according to the monitor.

Crop scouts toured more than 200 fields yesterday. They’ll continue moving west today and end the tour on Thursday with a statewide yield estimate.

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3. Heat Advisories, Flash Floods Expected in Much of Midwest Wednesday

Heat advisories have been issued again for much of Missouri and Arkansas and the eastern halves of Kansas and Oklahoma along with parts of Illinois, Texas, Louisiana, and three other states, according to the National Weather Service.

Temperatures in Missouri will be in the mid-90s today, but heat indexes are expected to top 107˚F., the NWS said in an early report on Wednesday.

The hottest weather will be in northeastern Arkansas where an extreme heat warning has been issued as indexes are expected around 110˚F. today.

Farther north, flood warnings abound in parts of Iowa and Illinois along with flood watches.

Several waterways, including the Mississippi and Illinois rivers, have breached their banks and are still rising after a major rain event earlier this week. The Mississippi River at Illinois City is at 15.3 feet and steady, and it is expected to fall below flood stage tomorrow.

Thunderstorms are expected to move east into Indiana and Ohio where fields have already been inundated with precipitation, according to the NWS.

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