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3 Big Things Today, October 23

Soybeans Lower in Overnight Trading; Export Inspections of Corn, Beans, Wheat All Decline.

1. Soybean Futures Lower Overnight as Harvest Accelerates

Soybean futures were lower in overnight trading after a government report showed U.S. growers harvested 15% of the country’s crop in a week.

Collection of soybeans were at 53% complete as of Sunday, up from 38% seven days earlier, the USDA said in a report on Monday. That’s still well behind the prior five-year average of 69% for this time of year. Some 66% of the crop was in good or excellent condition, unchanged from the previous week.

About 49% of the corn crop was harvested, up from 39% a week earlier and slightly ahead of the average of 47%, the government said. The crop was rated 68% good or excellent, also unchanged week to week.

Growers have accelerated the pace of the harvest in the past 10 days as drier weather helped them get into fields. Excessive rainfall in which much of the Midwest and southern Plains saw up to six times the normal amount of precipitation had left them sitting on the sidelines waiting out the storms.

Soybeans for November delivery fell 4¾¢ to $8.53¾ a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade. Soy meal futures lost $1.60 to $311.20 a short ton, and soy oil declined 0.30¢ to 28.86¢ a pound.

Corn futures rose 1¼¢ to $3.70¾ a bushel overnight.

Wheat for December delivery rose 2¾¢ to $5.10¾ a bushel in Chicago, while Kansas City futures gained a penny to $5.08¾ a bushel.

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2. Exports Inspections Decline Week to Week, Corn Assessments Outpacing Year-Ago Levels

Export inspections for corn and beans were slightly lower week to week while assessments of wheat declined, according to the USDA.

USDA officials examined 949,168 metric tons of corn for overseas delivery in the week that ended on October 18, down from 1.01 million tons in the prior seven days. The total was up from 636,029 tons during the same week in 2017.

Soybean inspections were down to 1.15 million metric tons from 1.21 million the prior week, the government said in a report. That’s well below the 2.59 million tons the agency inspected at this time last year.

Wheat assessments totaled 385,047 metric tons last week, down from 458,470 during the prior seven-day period. Still, that was up from 172,615 tons inspected during the same week a year ago, the USDA said.

Inspections of soybeans since the start of the oilseed’s marketing year on September 1 have been dismal compared with the same time frame last year. The USDA said in its report that it has assessed only 5.94 million metric tons since then, down from 9.84 million tons it inspected a year earlier.

Wheat examinations for overseas delivery since the start of its marketing year on June 1 are at 8.21 million metric tons, down from 10.8 million last year, the government said.

Corn inspections, meanwhile, have surged year over year. Since September 1, the USDA said it has inspected 7.82 million tons of the grain for shipment, up from 4.55 million tons during the same period in 2017.

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3. Midwest Weather Maps Look Mostly Dry, Flooding Continues in Iowa, Illinois, Texas

Weather maps look mostly dry for the next several days in much of the Midwest, which should keep the harvest rolling along, though there’s still flooding along several rivers and streams.

Several waterways including the Mississippi River along the Iowa-Illinois and Missouri-Illinois borders are over their banks. The Missouri River near the intersection of Nebraska, Iowa, and Missouri is also still flooding, according the National Weather Service.

Farther south in central Texas, several rivers are flooding, which more rain on the way, the NWS said in a report early Tuesday morning.

“Tropical moisture streaming ahead of major hurricane Willa off the western Mexico coastline is interacting with a frontal boundary in the Gulf Coast,” the agency said. “Locally heavy rain is possible in Texas, which could exacerbate ongoing flooding. Rain will shift farther east into the western and central Gulf Coast.”

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