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3 Big Things Today, June 8

Soybean Futures Lower in Overnight Trading; Export Sales Decline For Corn, Beans

1. Soybean Futures Lower Overnight on Signs of Slack Demand

Soybean futures were lower in overnight trading on weak demand amid favorable weather conditions in the U.S. Midwest.

Sales in the seven days that ended on May 31 plunged 40% from the previous week, the Department of Agriculture said in a report. China, which used to be the biggest buyer on a weekly basis, was only mentioned once in the report -- for canceling a shipment of 39,100 metric tons.

Trade relations between the U.S. and China have been rocky in recent months as the countries have threatened tariffs on the other’s products. Cooler heads prevailed, though, and it seemed that after some back-and-forth that the trade dispute would end.

The U.S. this week said Chinese tech company ZTE could again do business with American companies, but only after paying a fine and allowing officials oversight of its operations.

Still, the Asian country wasn’t a buyer of U.S. soybeans last week.

Soybean futures for July delivery fell 8 ¾ cents to $9.65 ½ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soymeal lost $2.30 to $356.10 a short ton and soy oil dropped 0.21 cent to 30.39 cents a pound.

Corn futures fell 2 cents to $3.74 ¼ a bushel overnight.

Wheat for July delivery lost 6 cents to $5.20 ¾ a bushel in Chicago while Kansas City futures declined 6 cents to $5.38 ½ a bushel.

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2. Corn, Soybean Export Sales Decline Week-to-Week, China Again Absent                                     

Corn and soybean export sales in the seven days through May 31 both dropped week-to-week, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Old-crop corn sales to overseas buyers totaled 838,600 metric tons, down 16% from the previous week and 5% from the prior four-week average, the USDA said in a report. While that’s lower on a weekly basis, it’s still on the high end of expectations for 600,000 to 900,000 metric tons, according to Allendale.

Mexico was the big buyer at 247,500 tons, followed by Vietnam at 136,800 tons, the USDA said. Colombia bought 85,400 tons and Saudi Arabia purchased 69,900 tons from U.S. supplies.

New-crop sales were reported at 418,300 metric tons as unknown buyers took 203,200 tons, Japan and Vietnam were both in for 60,000 tons and Mexico purchased 45,000 tons.

Soybean sales for delivery in the 2017-2018 marketing year that ends on Aug. 31 totaled 164,800 metric tons, down 40% from the prior week and 5% from the average, according to the government. Analysts had expected sales from 50,000 to 350,000 tons, Allendale said.

The Netherlands bought 105,000 metric tons, Mexico took 31,900 tons, Colombia purchased 21,600 tons, Indonesia took 16,900  tons and Japan was in for 16,400 tons. China was conspicuously absent again, and in fact canceled a shipment for 39,100 tons, the USDA said.

Sales for delivery in the 2018-2019 marketing year totaled 34,700 tons.

Wheat sales for delivery in the marketing year that ended on May 31 totaled 19,400 metric tons as Haiti took 9,900 tons, unknown buyers bought 8,300 tons, Venezuela was in for 6,000 tons, Mexico took 5,900 tons and Malaysia purchased 3,300 tons, the USDA said. Nigeria canceled a shipment for 30,400 tons.

With the marketing year ending last week, about 1.3 million tons of sales were rolled over to the 2018-2019 marketing year that runs from June 1 to May 31.

Sales for 2018-2019 were reported at 250,900 metric tons. An unknown customer bought 103,500 tons, the Philippines purchased 51,000 tons, Mexico took 30,900 tons and Brazil was in for 30,000 tons. Analysts had pegged sales from 250,000 to 450,000 tons.

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3. Central Nebraska, Kansas Likely to See Severe Thunderstorms Tonight

Central Nebraska and Kansas likely will see some severe thunderstorms late this evening and throughout the night, according to the National Weather Service.

The best chance for storms are in south-central Nebraska where there’s a potential for damaging wind gusts of up to 70 miles an hour and hail as big as half-dollars, the NWS said in a report early Friday morning.

The storms will then give way to extreme heat.

“This weekend will be hot by early-June standards,” the agency said. “Especially on Sunday afternoon, heat index values could reach 100 degrees in various parts of the outlook area. Between Monday and Thursday, intermittent thunderstorm chances return to various portions of the outlook area.”

Scattered thunderstorms are also expected today and tonight in parts of eastern Iowa and western Illinois.

Heavy downpours can be expected along with frequent lightning, the NWS said.  

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