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May 15, 2020 | FBN Insights | Kevin McNew

Commodities Firm After Improved Economic Data From China

Corn is continuing the stretch of impressive sales figures since early March

Export Sales In Line With Expectations 

  • Corn sales, for the week ended 5/07, were 42.2 million bushels compared to 30.4 million bushels last week and 21.8 million bushels last year.
  • Soybean sales were 24.1 million bushels, holding steady from the previous week's 24.0 million bushels, and outpacing last year's 13.7 million bushels.
  • New crop wheat sales were only 5.5 million bushels, at the low end of market expectations, and compared to last year's sales 15.4 million bushels.
  • Cotton sales of 238,100 running bales for 2019/20 were down 36% from the previous week, but up 50% percent from the prior 4-week average.
  • FBN’s Take On What It Means For The Farmer: Corn is continuing the stretch of impressive sales figures since early March. Total commitments of 1,519 million bushels are still down nearly 18% from last year's 1,846 million, but the gap has been narrowing. The USDA raised its old crop export projection to 1,775 million bushels in the May report released on Tuesday. 

Ethanol Production Coming Back on Line

  • Valero’s Riga, MI and Bluffton, IN plants, which have been shut down since near the beginning of the year, have started bidding for corn.
  • The Andersons has resumed operations at its Albion, MI and Denison, IA facilities.
  • Pacific Ethanol announced it is gradually increasing production and is now operating at nearly 50% capacity, up from 40% at its low.
  • EIA reported ethanol production in the week ended May 8 was 617,000 barrels per day vs 598,000 last week.
  • FBN’s Take On What It Means For The Farmer:  Increased fuel consumption as the US economy reopens will continue to improve ethanol usage. Stocks are now below 1.05 billion gallons and are returning to levels seen before the shut-downs. Based on increasing demand and improving margins the market is recovering from its historic downturn. There is still a long way to go, but look for basis levels to improve in the short term.

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