3 Big Things Today, October 11, 2022
1. Wheat Futures Drop in Overnight Trading
Wheat plunged in overnight trading as speculative investors who were long the market, or bet on higher prices, sold contracts and exited their positions after futures yesterday touched the highest in three months.
Futures surged yesterday after Russia launched more attacks on Ukraine, further throwing into question an ongoing agreement between the countries allowing Ukrainian grain to move from its ports.
Several cities in Ukraine were hit, including the capital of Kyiv. Fourteen people were killed, and almost 100 were injured in the attacks, which drew widespread condemnation from global leaders and the United Nations.
Some investors who had been bullish on wheat likely exited their positions and booked profits amid ongoing uncertainty about the status of the agreement, which was reached in late July.
Since then, however, Russian President Vladimir Putin has questioned the deal and has threatened several times to renounce or renegotiate the agreement.
Prices also may be on the defensive after rain fell over the weekend in parts of the southern Plains, where hard-red winter wheat is beginning to grow.
About 40% of the U.S. winter-wheat crop was planted as of Oct. 2, while 15% had emerged, according to the Department of Agriculture. The agency is scheduled to release its weekly crop-progress report this afternoon, a day later than normal, due to a federal holiday on Monday.
Analysts also may be squaring positions ahead of tomorrow's World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) and crop production reports from USDA.
Wheat futures for December delivery dropped 20 ¼¢ to $9.17 ½ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade, while Kansas City futures plunged 17 ¾¢ to $10.06 ½ a bushel.
Corn futures for December delivery were down 1 ½¢ to $6.96 ½ a bushel.
Soybean futures for November delivery fell 2 ¼ ¢ to $13.71 ¾ a bushel. Soymeal declined 20¢ to $405.50 a short ton, while soybean oil lost 1¢ to $65.06 a pound.**
2. Around 100 Vessels Carrying Ukraine Grain Await Inspection
About 100 ships that sailed from Ukraine are waiting to be inspected at ports in Turkey, according to data from the United Nations.
Ships that sailed as early as Sept. 23 are still awaiting inspection outside of Istanbul, under the terms of the agreement between Russia and Ukraine that allows agricultural products to be shipped from Ukrainian ports.
Roughly 2.05 million metric tons of wheat, corn, and soybeans, among other products, are aboard the ships, the UN said. The vessels sailed from Ukrainian ports including Odesa, Chornomorsk, Yuzhny, and Pivdennyi.
More than 300 ships have sailed from the ports since the agreement was brokered in late July and implemented around Aug. 1, carrying 6.87 million metric tons of grains and other foodstuffs, the organization said.
Corn has been the most abundant crop shipped thus far, with around 3 million metric tons aboard the vessels. Wheat exports totaled 2.1 million metric tons, sunflower shipments were reported at 414,000 tons, and rapeseed exports came in at 390,000 tons, the United Nations said.
Spain was the biggest destination, followed by Turkey, Italy, and China.
Ukrainian farmers are attempting to accelerate their shipments of grains and oilseeds as the fighting between Ukraine and Russia intensifies, Commerzbank analysts said in a note to clients this morning.
3. Red-Flag Warnings Issued For Much of West-Central Nebraska
Red-flag warnings have been issued for much of west-central Nebraska, northeastern Colorado, and northwestern Kansas amid extremely dry weather, according to the National Weather Service.
In central Nebraska, winds will be sustained from 15 to 25 mph with gusts of up to 35 mph today and tonight, the NWS said in a report early this morning.
Relative humidity will fall as low as 15%.
In northwestern Kansas, winds will gust up to 35 mph, and humidity will drop to 12%, the agency said.