Sep 21, 2014
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Cash Grain Insights

RSS By: Kevin McNew, AgWeb.com

Kevin McNew is President of Grain Hedge and Geograin. McNew was raised on a farm in central Oklahoma and received his bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma State University, and master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Economics from North Carolina State University. For over a decade, he was a Professor of Economics at the University of Maryland and Montana State University, focusing on commodity markets. He has received numerous academic awards for his research and outreach work, and was (and still is) widely regarded for boiling down complex economic issues into easy-to-understand concepts for applied life.

 

Drought Intensifies in Plains, Cutting Wheat Yield Potential

Mar 28, 2014

 Wheat gave up a large share of Thursday’s 13 cent gain in the overnight trade, slipping 9 cents back to the $7 area. Corn and beans were lower as well with modest 2 cent gains.

Markets continue to wait for Monday’s round of USDA reports. The Planting Intentions Report will be the first formal survey of farmers for the 2014 crop and is expected to show lower corn and higher bean acres for the coming year. Analysts look for corn plantings to fall in 2014 to 92.7 million acres, off from the 2013 plantings of 95.4 million. The range of estimates, however, is quite wide going from a low of 90.5 to a high of 94.5 million. For beans, traders expect plantings to come in at 81.1 million versus 76.5 in 2013. Again, a wide discrepancy exists among analysts with the range of estimates going from 78.5 million to 83.6 million. In wheat, analysts expect all wheat acres to be at 56.3 million, on par with last year’s plantings of 56.2.

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In wheat, yesterday’s latest drought monitor showed an expanding drought situation in the Plains especially in Oklahoma. Private weather firm Planalytic’s also released their first wheat estimate of the season showing winter wheat yields at 45.7 bushels per acre as compared to 47.4 bushels per acre.

On Thursday, Argentina’s government projected the soybean crop at 54 MMT, on par with USDA’s latest forecast, but pegged the corn crop at 29.8 MMT, quite a bit higher than the USDA projection of 24 MMT. FOB Gulf soybean basis offers fell 2 cents late Thursday on softer export interest. Traders continue to assess rumors of Chinese cancellations, with the latest suggesting some Chinese importers are having problems obtaining letters of credit from Chinese banks. Even so, nothing has shown up yet that suggests cancellations will make a dent in the 100 MB overage of export sales relative to USDA’s annual forecast of 1,530 MB. 

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