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3 Big Things Today, November 30, 2021

Wheat Futures Drop Overnight; Weekly Corn, Soybean Inspection Lower.

1. Wheat Futures Plunge in Overnight Trading

Wheat plunged in overnight trading as crop conditions were better than expected and amid profit-taking by speculative investors.

About 44% of the U.S. winter-wheat crop was in good or excellent condition as of Sunday, the Department of Agriculture said in a report. That’s unchanged week-to-week, though analysts were expecting a modest decline.

In Kansas, the biggest producer of the grain, 62% earned top ratings this week, up from 61% a week earlier, the USDA said.

Oklahoma wheat, however, was rated 48% good or excellent, down from 55% the previous week.

About 92% of the crop had emerged as of the start of the week, up from 86% a week earlier and close to the prior five-year average of 91% for this time of year, the agency said.

This was the last crop progress report of the season from the USDA.

Futures last week hit the highest level in almost nine years, which likely is leading to some profit-taking by fund managers and other large investors.

Soybean and corn futures also dropped in overnight trading on concerns that the spread of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus will curb global demand for agricultural products.

Still, most people are taking a wait-and-see approach as little is known thus far about the variant.

The World Health Organization said in a report yesterday that transmissibility and the severity of the variant isn’t yet clear.

Wheat futures for December delivery dropped 10¾¢ to $8.11½ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade, while Kansas City futures lost 14¾¢ to $8.42½ a bushel.

Corn futures for December delivery were down 8¼¢ to $5.74 a bushel.

Soybean futures for November delivery plunged 12¢ to $12.29½ a bushel. Soymeal lost $3.70 to $339 a short ton, while soy oil declined 1.63¢ to 56.65¢ a pound.

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2. Weekly Export Inspections of Corn and Beans Decline

Inspections of corn and soybeans for overseas delivery declined week-to-week, according to the USDA.

Corn assessments in the seven days that ended on Nov. 25 fell to 766,063 metric tons from 825,650 tons a week earlier, the agency said.

That’s also down from the 1.05 million tons examined for offshore delivery in the same week last year.

Soybean inspections totaled 2.14 million metric tons, down from 2.43 million tons a week earlier and 2.42 million tons a year earlier, the USDA said.

Wheat bucked the trend as assessments last week were reported at 250,651 metric tons, up from 192,822 tons the previous week.

Still, that was well below the 534,534 metric tons inspected the same week in 2020.

Since the start of the marketing year on Sept. 1, the government has inspected 8.58 million metric tons of corn for export, down from the 10.3 million tons assessed during the same time frame a year earlier.

Soybean assessments are now at 21.1 million metric tons, down from the 27.3 million tons examined a year earlier.

Wheat inspections since the beginning of the grain’s marketing year on June 1 now stand at 10.8 million metric tons, down from 12.9 million tons during the same period in 2020, the USDA said in its report.

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3. Wind Gusts Up to 40 mph Expected in Southern Plains

Strong winds are expected in parts of the southern Plains today along with warmer-than-normal temperatures, according to the National Weather Service.

North winds are forecast from 15 to 25 mph with gusts of up to 40 mph in parts of the Oklahoma and Texas panhandles, the NWS said in a repot early this morning. The strongest winds will hit the area between 10 a.m.  and 2 p.m. local time.

Temperatures have a chance to reach records on Thursday, the agency said. In Amarillo, Texas, the record high is 78°F. set in 2012, and in Dalhart, Texas, the record is 78°F. set in 1995. Those records likely will be tested this week, the NWS said.

Farther north, rain is expected in parts of Minnesota tonight. The precipitation in the form of rain, snow, and freezing rain will move eastward overnight, the NWS said.

“While the amounts will be light and be of short duration or intermittent nature, there is the concern that the timing is during the nighttime hours and that this mixed wintry precipitation comes early on in the winter precipitation season,” the agency said. “The area most susceptible to any mixed wintry precipitation will be along and north of the Interstate 94 corridor.”

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