Farmers are holding tight to much of their remaining corn and soybeans as Chicago futures backtrack from the big gains one to two weeks ago.
Grain Movement 7/14: Farmers tighten grip on crops
The reluctance to sell in a falling market produced some higher basis bids for corn and soybeans this past week as shippers and processers still need supplies, Midwest grain dealers said.
On Monday, Chicago's September corn futures closed at $4.05 and December at $4.16. Early last week they peaked around $4.43 and $4.54. August soybeans are at $10.07 and November at $9.99 after recent peaks of $10.53 and $10.45.
What corn is available is being shipped to the southeast to either poultry producers or ethanol plants. That remains the best market for August and first-half September positions. However, that market should close in a few weeks when corn harvest starts in that region.
Soybeans continue to go to nearby processors as basis bids increased about 5 cents in some locations to partially offset the drop in the futures and to entice farmer selling.
Corn bids going by barge to the Gulf export points rose 2 cents in the past week. However, soybean bids dropped 7 to 8 cents and as that export demand has dried up.
River markets are back in operation after flooding and high water in June disrupted loadings. Last week, the Chicago Board of Trade declared its second force majeure of the season for its loading stations on the Illinois River because of flooding and high water. However, shippers on the mid-Mississippi and Ohio Rivers said they are loading and moving barges.
A Indiana shipper said water on the Ohio River is high, but remains under flood stage at about 38 feet and should drop quickly.
"It is scheduled to drop to about 24 feet by Saturday. It will drop in a hurry," the shipper said.
Export inspections on Monday were better-than-expected for corn, soybeans and wheat and all three were up from a week ago. Corn inspections came in at 45.7 million bushels, soybeans at 11.3 million and wheat at 18 million.
A number of dealers said area farmers are hiring crop dusters to spray fungicide on corn to inhibit disease following this season's rain.
In Illinois, dealers said vomitoxin has been a problem in the newly harvested soft red winter wheat. Elevators are either rejecting the wheat or paying steep discounts. One dealer relayed reports of 30-cent per bushel discounts. Also, some merchandisers have limited acceptance levels for wheat to 2 to 5 parts per billion.
Late on Monday, USDA reported the nation's corn was unchanged at 69% good to excellent, as improvements in Iowa, North Dakota and Ohio were offset by declines in a number of states including Illinois, Indiana, and Missouri.
Grain Movement 7/7: Farmers sell as corn tops $4, soybeans $10
Soybeans were unchanged at 62% good to excellent. Slippage was seen in the Illinois, Indiana and Iowa, while Arkansas, Minnesota, Nebraska and Wisconsin improved USDA said.