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Grain market week in review - April 13, 2018

Corn shipments are gangbusters, USDA export had bullish and bearish details and grain markets bounce lower Friday.

Missed some market news this week? Here’s a look back.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Soybeans were ground zero for last week’s dispute between the U.S. and China, but rallied any way as traders wait for USDA’s updated estimate of drought-wracked Argentine production due Tuesday. Cold temperatures likely damaged some hard red winter wheat fields into northern Texas over the weekend, helping those markets gap higher as well.

After a slow start for the 2017 crop, corn shipments are coming on like gangbusters. Export inspections last week hit 76.2 million bushels last week, a marketing year high and one of the best levels going back some 25 years. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Grain futures are mixed this morning, but outside markets appear ready to take more risk. Stock markets moved higher around the world following more conciliatory comments on trade by China’s President Xi today.

Soybeans are trying to hang on to double digit gains, following a USDA projection of 2017 crop ending stocks that fell by 5 million bushels, surprising the trade. Corn traded both sides of unchanged after USDA raised carryout by 55 million bushels to 2.182 billion, due to weaker feed and industrial usage suggested by the March 29 stocks report. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Soybeans tried to regain their momentum overnight following late profit-taking Tuesday that trimmed gains from a friendly USDA report. Stock markets headed in the other direction on nervousness over potential U.S. action in Syria.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Winter wheat futures suffered double digit losses overnight on follow-through selling aftet Wednesday’s weak performance. So why are prices down, despite lower ratings again this week? 

For the week ending April 5, USDA export data unwrapped plenty of bullish – and a few bearish – details. Corn export sales were lackluster while export shipments of the commodity hit a historical high. Soybean export sales came in big, meantime, and wheat landed well below expectations.

Friday, April 6, 2018

Grain futures traded mixed overnight. Soybeans pressed to new one-month highs. Wheat sales remain lackluster, while corn traders watch weather here in the U.S. and overseas.

Grain futures are mixed this morning as markets see follow through from Thursday’s trends continue today. Trade tensions appear to be easing, with President Trump yesterday even suggesting the U.S. take another look at the Trans-Pacific Partnership he scuttled in the first week after taking office.

Large export sales of soybeans were reported on three days this week. Argentina, China, Mexico and unknown destinations were the buyers. 

Finicky grain markets bounced lower Friday after profit-taking took a bite out of soybean prices and wetter forecasts in the U.S. Plains caused wheat prices to slide once again. Spillover weakness clipped corn prices as well.

It's been a topsy-turvy week in the markets and weather. Corn, wheat and soybeans were all down on Friday. There's snow on the ground in Nebraska, South Dakota and Minnesota with a Blizzard Warning in six states. Xanto is expected to bring a foot of snow to parts of Minnesota. 

Market outlooks 

Fertilizer Outlook – A slow start to the growing season from the Plains to the Midwest has kept fertilizer demand under wraps so far. But slowing imports are keeping retail prices firm despite another round of pullbacks on international markets for nitrogen. 

Soybean Outlook - Here’s a list of why soybeans should keep rallying this spring – and another list showing why they shouldn’t.

Corn Outlook - Virtually nothing is planted in the heart of the Corn Belt, but the market already faces what could be a crucial test. History suggest corn will pass that test, setting up pricing opportunities for new crop into the spring and summer. 

Energy/Ethanol Outlook - If you still need to buy fuel for spring, get ready for pain at the pump. Don’t blame profiteering oil companies – there are plenty of reasons petroleum prices are expensive this spring. 

Wheat Outlook - A year ago winter wheat conditions dropped as fields came out of dormancy, triggering fears of damage that didn’t pan out nearly as bad as crop ratings suggested. But growers got a chance to sell into the summer when the market found its second wind due to severe drought on the northern Plains that slashed the spring-planted crop.

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