3 Big Things Today, March 1, 2021
1. Soybean Futures Surge in Overnight Trading
Soybeans jumped in overnight trading on concerns about wet weather in Brazil that may further delay fieldwork and dry weather in Argentina.
Rains in the next several days are expected to slow slightly in center-west Brazil where soybeans and corn are grown, but delays are expected to continue, Commodity Weather Group said in a report.
Soybeans in about half of southern Argentina, meanwhile, are most at risk for late stress due to dry weather, the forecaster said.
Temperatures are expected to be in the 90s F. in the six- to 10-day outlook in Argentina and at least one weather model shows a risk of hotter and drier weather, CWG said.
In the longer-term outlook, Brazil’s safrinha corn seeding will continue to crawl along due to wet weather.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is scheduled to release its monthly crushings report today at 3 p.m. in Washington. Analysts polled by Reuters are expecting soybean crush in January of 5.867 million tons, or 195.6 million bushels.
Soybean futures for March delivery jumped 15¼¢ to $14.19½ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soymeal was up $4.90 to $426.30 a short ton, and soy oil gained 0.09¢ to 50.03¢ a pound.
Corn for March delivery rose 1¢ to $5.48½ a bushel.
Wheat futures for March delivery added 4¼¢ to $6.64½ a bushel, while Kansas City futures gained 4¾¢ to $6.38½ a bushel.
2. Speculative Investors Curb Bullish Bets in Corn, Hard-Red Winter Wheat
Money managers reduced their net-long positions, or bets on higher prices, in corn and hard-red winter wheat last week while raising their bullish positions in soybeans and soft-red winter futures, according to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
Speculators lowered their net longs in corn to 345,060 futures contracts in the seven days that ended on Feb. 23, the CFTC said in a report. That’s down from 348,491 contracts a week earlier.
Investors also reduced their bullish positions in hard-red winter wheat to 53,191 futures contracts last week from 56,676 contracts the previous week, the agency said.
On the plus side, large funds raised their bullish bets on soybeans to 159,915 futures contracts.
That’s up from a net 149,633 contracts a week earlier and the largest such position since the week that ended on Dec. 29, the CFTC said.
In soft-red winter wheat, speculative investors increased their net-long positions to 20,461 contracts last week, up from 15,389 a week earlier and the largest long position since Jan. 5, the agency said in its report.
The weekly Commitments of Traders report from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission shows trader positions in futures markets.
The report provides positions held by commercial traders, or those using futures to hedge their physical assets; noncommercial traders, or money managers (also called large speculators); and nonreportables, or small speculators.
A net-long position indicates more traders are betting on higher prices, while a net-short position means more are betting futures will decline.
3. Fast-Moving Winter Storm Moving Across Minnesota, Northern Iowa, Wisconsin
A fast-moving snowstorm will move across southern Minnesota and northeastern Iowa and into west-central Wisconsin this morning, according to the National Weather Service.
Some areas will receive up to an inch of snow and roads are expected to be slippery in the area, the NWS said in a report early this morning. The snow should slow by mid-morning.
Flood warnings and watches have been issued in parts of the mid-South and Ohio River Valley regions, the agency said.
In southern Ohio and northern Kentucky, flood warnings have been issued and are in effect until tomorrow morning.
Several waterways including the Licking River, the Brush Creek, and the Scioto River are all near or above flood stage in the area, the NWS said.