The bumper soybean crop produced last year has made the global soybean market very competitive. U.S. Soybean sales have struggled under the strong U.S. dollar, reporting their second sales reduction in three months. Wheat sales declined from last week, but corn sales improved. Soybean exports improved, rebounded from the near marketing year low reported last week. Corn and Wheat sales both decreased from last week.

The USDA Stocks and Acreage report released Tuesday caused significant price increases in the grain market. Corn, soybean, and wheat prices all jumped considerably following the report. Corn and soybean stocks and planted acres estimates fell short of analyst expectations causing prices to increase. Wheat estimates were above analyst expectations for stocks and planted acres, but wheat prices were supported by the corn and soybean price rallies. ...continue reading

(Reuters) Livestock feed will surpass biofuels as the main source of growth in global grain consumption in the next 10 years as emerging countries consume more animal protein while lower oil prices and policy changes end a decade of high demand for crop-based biofuel, the FAO and OECD said on Wednesday.

In their annual Agricultural Outlook report, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development confirmed a broad trend already projected last year of more moderate food commodity prices due to production gains and less vigorous demand.

Prices of all major agricultural products are set to decrease in real terms over 2015-2024, although they will remain above levels seen before a surge in 2007-2008 that heralded a period of high volatility, the report said. ...continue reading

June brought an abundant wave of relentless storms, almost double the normal monthly rainfall, and a strong rally in grain prices. The wet conditions have spurred a long list of concerns for U.S. farmers and U.S. crop conditions substantially deteriorated in the final two weeks of June, according to the USDA.

Nitrogen leaching and the lack of days available to spray post emergence crop protection chemicals are two of the major concerns affecting crop conditions. Weed, pest, and disease pressure may all increase as the growing season progresses due to the deadly combination of wet and cold weather after planting, followed by delayed spraying. ...continue reading

Soybean stocks, held on-farm, more than doubled from 2014 as farmers try to wait out low soybean prices. After the decline in soybean prices last year, farmers with the ability to store their grain have done so, taking advantage of the market when available. Overall stocks were reported slightly below analyst expectations for corn and soybeans, while wheat stocks came in higher than expected.

The planting report came with few surprises, falling within the expected range of most analysts. The estimated soybean planted acres, 85.15 million acres, remains a record, although the reported numbers did not take into account the large number of drowned out and prevent planted soybean acres being reported in Missouri and other wet regions. Corn planted acres, 88.90 million acres, were the lowest estimate since the 2010 report, but the shift from corn to soybean acres was expected prior to planting this year. ...continue reading

(Reuters) The powerful U.S. corn lobby is launching an unusual offensive against the country's sugar sector, an old foe in the lucrative sweetener market: seeking to overturn the controversial, near-century old U.S. sugar program.

The Corn Refiners Association, which represents high-fructose corn syrup producers, has hired Washington lobbyist firm, the Alpine Group, to challenge sugar's long-protected status, a spokesman for the organization said on Thursday.

The sugar program, which restricts imports, sets price floors and provides government-backed loans to cane and beet processors, is considered one of the most generous in the U.S. Farm Bill that passed a year ago. ...continue reading

June is nearly gone and farmers hope the rain will leave with it. Rain throughout June has left farmers unable to manage weeds and pests and caused ponding in many areas. Corn, soybean, and wheat conditions have responded to the reports of flooded fields, decreasing over the past two weeks.

The USDA estimated corn crop conditions in the U.S. as of June 28th, at 68% as “Excellent” or “Good,” a 3% decrease from last week and a 12% decrease from last year. 24% of the crop was reported as “Fair,” a 1% increase from last week, but a 4% increase from last year. 8% was rated as “Poor” or “Very Poor”, a 2% increase from last week. ...continue reading

(WSJ) Wheat futures soared nearly 6% Friday, extending a sudden bounce that has put the grain in bull market territory as pounding rains have drenched crops in fields across the eastern Midwest just as farmers are supposed to be harvesting.

The unexpected price surge, including a 15% run over the past week, comes after wheat prices hit five-year lows in May, when ample global supplies and lackluster export demand for U.S. wheat depressed the crop’s value. Many forecasters as recently as the start of this month were predicting continued softness in wheat prices, but in the past two weeks up to six times the normal amount of rain has fallen in parts of the U.S. Midwest, according to data from the National Weather Service, and more precipitation is in the forecast for next week. ...continue reading

Severe weather continued to pass through the Midwest this week. Straight-lined winds recorded at 90+ MPH blew through areas of Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Wisconsin early this week causing crop and property damage. The picture below shows a mangled grain bin and grain arm left in the wake of the severe weather in Fayette County, Iowa.

POW 6-26-15

Picture taken by Steffi Lee @SteffiSLee

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Corn exports continued to rise this week behind greater demand from Japan, receiving more than 40% of the total corn exported last week. Soybean exports decreased significantly as Chinese demand for U.S. soybeans has softened. The strong U.S. dollar has made Brazilian and Argentine soybeans more attractive to importers. Corn sales decreased due to significant returns from unknown destinations. Soybean sales also decreased behind heavy Chinese returns. Wheat sales increased.

Crop traders and farmers are anxiously awaiting the release of the USDA Stocks and Acreage report on June 30. Analysts have reported both bearish and bullish expectations for the report. The bears are leaning on the expectation that corn stocks will be very high, while the bulls are hoping that the acreage information will reflect lower planted area than what was released in the March 31st report. The acreage surveys conducted require entries to be submitted by June 1, so all of the Prevent Plant acres elected in June will not be reflected in the report. ...continue reading