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March 21, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 219

USDA State Offices Release Winter Wheat Condition Scores

Grains Continue to Sink Lower

Grains continued to sink lower following Monday’s sharp sell-off in wheat. In outside markets, the US Dollar index fell below 100 for the first time since early February while crude oil was trying to find stability in the $49 a barrel territory.


After the market closed on Monday, USDA state offices in OK/KS/TX released their winter wheat crop condition scores which showed a mostly deteriorating crop. Kansas slipped from 42% good-to-excellent last week to 40% this week, while OK saw a similar deterioration from 40% to 38% over the past week. TX slipped from 35% last week to 34% this week. While these ratings are substantially below last year’s ratings at this time of year (47% to 63%), they are only slightly off of the long-term averages for the 3-state region, generally around 40%.


Japan's Ministry of Agriculture is seeking to buy a total of 117,689 tonnes of food quality wheat from the United States, Canada and Australia in a regular tender that will close late on Thursday.

Yesterday, Agroconsult a private analyst pegged Brazil’s soybean crop at 111 MMT up from their previous forecast of 107.8 MMT and above USDA’s estimate of 108.


The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

March 20, 2017 | Kevin McNew | Views: 161
March 20, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 215

HRW Wheat Belt Expected to See Beneficial Rains

Grains Start with a Good Bounce on Sunday Night

Grains started with a good bounce on Sunday night but by early Monday gains were starting to erode.


USDA reported a 132,000 MT of corn was sold to South Korea.


Friday’s CFTC report on managed money showed funds had sold more positions than originally thought in the past week. The soybean long was off, the wheat short was larger than expected and corn went from net long to net short.


The US HRW wheat belt is expected to see some beneficial rains in the coming two weeks with about 75% of the crop expected to see beneficial moisture. In international news, Turkey denied reports that it has banned imports of certain products from Russia, after traders warned shipments of Russian wheat to its second-biggest export market face disruption. But, Turkish buyers are said to be on hold for purchasing Russian ag products.


In South America, Brazil is about 62% harvested on beans vs 56% average. In Argentina, port workers at Rosario are said to be taking a one-day strike on March 30 to demand better wages. About 80% of Argentina’s exports go thru Rosario.

The Taiwan Flour Millers' Association has issued an international tender to purchase 98,200 tonnes of grade 1 milling wheat to be sourced from the United States.


The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

March 17, 2017 | Kevin McNew | Views: 162
March 17, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 173

Weekly Cash Comments

Weekly Cash Commentary for week ending 03/17/2017

Cash grain basis showed modest strength this week after futures prices stabilized en-route to a two week slide. For the week, US average corn basis was up 1.1 cent a bushel while soybeans were higher by 1.0 cents per bushel.


Weekly Basis Changes-

  Corn Soybeans
US Average +1.1 C +1.0 C
Processor +1.9 C +0.6 C
River Terminals +2.1 C +3.8 C


Corn basis had a little more life at ethanol plants this week as processors bid basis higher by 1.9 cents on average. Ethanol production surged this week following a 5-week decline. Farmer selling has slowed considerably thanks to the slide in futures and with a warm spring approaching soon, it seems likely corn plants will have to pull basis up to attract sales in the coming months. For river terminals they were also higher on the week as solid export business continues to keep grain outflows on the move.


For soy plants, they continue to have no real interest in bidding up basis with only a modest 0.6 cent advance on the week. Meanwhile river terminals were up 3.7 cents on the week. River basis for soybeans continues to be below norm for this time of year and will eventually need to move higher as we approach delivery of May futures. Of the two, soybean basis seems to have the most upside in the coming 6 weeks as compared to corn.

The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

March 17, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 182

Grains Listless in Overnight Trading

US Government weather outlook predictions

Grains Listless in Overnight Trading

Grains drifted listlessly in overnight trade with no firm direction heading into the weekend.


The Buenos Aires Grains Exchange said that Argentina’s corn and bean crop is benefitting from optimal soil moisture. If the positive trend in yield expectations is strengthened over the weeks ahead, volumes at the end of the season could be higher than our current estimate," the report said. Argentine soy planting starts in mid-October, with harvesting ending mid-year. Corn goes into the ground in September through December. Harvesting is usually from March through July. The report said 10 percent of the 2016/17 corn area has been brought in so far. Although harvesting machines have gotten bogged down in the wettest areas, the fields that are being harvested are showing better-than-expected yields, it added. The exchange kept its 2016/17 corn crop estimate unchanged at 37 MMT.

The latest outlook from the U.S. government predicts warmer-than-average weather that could have a game-changing impact when the U.S. corn and soybean planting campaign gets underway in a few weeks. The U.S. Climate Prediction Center on Thursday said the warm trend will start in April and strengthen through June, except in the Dakotas and Minnesota.


In the US Midwest, the SRW wheat crop should benefit from milder/wetter pattern, allowing regrowth after freeze event. Plains wheat warm/dry over next week, depleting moisture; at least SW 1/3 of belt misses relief late next week.


The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

March 16, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 221

Grains Move Higher in the Overnight

USDA Weekly Exports Show a Good Week for Corn

Grains moved higher overnight led by soybeans as they moved above $10 a bushel on front month May. Outside markets saw crude oil and equities higher while the US dollar hit their lowest mark since early February.


USDA said exporters sold 120,000 MT of Hard Red Winter wheat to Algeria and 120,000 MT of soybeans to unknown destinations.


Traders are keenly watching the weather outlook in the dry Southern Plains. Warm temperatures Thursday through Sunday will increase some of the need for moisture as the crop develops further. The latest weather models show a rain system for Mar. 22-24 in this region but it will likely miss where the Texas and Oklahoma Panhandles miss out A second system is expected in western Hard Red Winter Wheat areas Mar. 26-28 but again the SW Plains are expected to miss out.

USDA weekly exports showed a good week for corn with both old- and new-crop sales beating the high end of expectations. Meanwhile wheat was at the low end of expectations for both old- and new-crop while soybean old-crop sales were at the low end of expectations but new-crop exceeded expectations.


Export Sales-




Wheat - OC 



Wheat - NC



Corn - OC



Corn - NC










On Wednesday, the US Federal Reserve raised interest rates as expected and signaled that they expect a total of 3 rate hikes in 2017 and 3 more hikes in 2018 based on the strong economic signals.


The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

March 15, 2017 | Kevin McNew | Views: 190
March 15, 2017 | Grain Hedge Insights | Kevin McNew | Views: 175

Grains in Recovery Mode on Wednesday

February NOPA Crush will be out at 11 am CST Today

Grains were in recovery mode on Wednesday after two weeks of sliding lower. In outside markets, crude oil was trying to bounce off its worst prices in 3.5 months while the US dollar was weaker to start the day ahead of the Fed announcement.


Overnight, there was some interest in wheat deals with Egypt tendering for an unspecified amount of wheat. In addition, Jordan and Indonesia were also shopping for milling wheat.


February NOPA crush will be out at 11 am CDT today. The trade expects a soft month thanks to weakening crush margins. Only 146.1 MB are expected to have been crushed in February, slightly off from 146.2 in the same month last year.


In the US, cold temperatures along the Eastern Cornbelt of IN/OH/KY are thought to have caused some winter kill damage to the wheat crop there. In the Plains, there are expected to be rains in the 11-15 day outlook although it will be confined mostly to the Eastern Plains, with the SW parts of KS/OK/TX not expected to see much moisture.


The Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates in their policy statement at 1 PM CDT. If realized, this would be the second time in three months. The rate-hike is widely expected, so the real news will be if the U.S. central bank will signal an even faster pace of monetary tightening this year than the current three rate hikes that it projected at its December meeting.


US export competitiveness improved this week with US prices falling more than foreign country FOB grain prices. The exception was Argentina’s wheat which moved $2/MT lower relative to US prices over the past week.







Last Week

Last Year





































Export spreads represent a foreign country price minus US price at export destinations, in USD per metric ton.  A higher spread indicates

the foreign price has risen relative to US prices, making the foreign country less competitive and the US more competitive.


The risk of trading futures, hedging, and speculating can be substantial. Grain Hedge is a Branch of Foremost Trading LLC (NFA ID: 0307930)

March 14, 2017 | Kevin McNew | Views: 184

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