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Current Marketing Thoughts

RSS By: Kevin Van Trump, AgWeb.com

Kevin Van Trump has over 20 years of experience in the grain and livestock industry.

10 reasons corn could move higher!!

Sep 09, 2013

 Corn trade continues to digest NEW record yields being harvested by many producers in the Delta and Ohio River Valley area (specifically southern IL, IN and northern KY). This talk is obviously keeping many of the larger traders leaning over the short-side of the boat. Their contention is, even though current supplies are extremely tight, a 13.8 to 14.1 billion bushel crop is just around the corner. Lets also keep in mind many of the larger money-magers believe current USDA demand numbers are over-stated as well, especially exports. Most well versed S&D experts will tell you, since global inventories have grown, and most of the foreign exporters have limited storage space, they will be much quicker than US suppliers (with ample storage) to lower prices in an attempt to move supply.  Meaning once again, our inability to be the worlds "low cost" provider will ultimately weigh on demand. This logic is hard to argue and has the bears thinking exports are still overstated by some 200-300 million bushels.  Personally I am NOT as pessimistic or as bearish as most... I am not saying I have become bullish, I just think additional downside pressure may be short lived. Below are my Top-10 reasons:

 

  1. Record yield headlines might not last: I am not as sold as I once was on the fact the US corn crop is going to be 14 billion bushels. Yes the irrigated yields down south are massive. But I am thinking as the harvest starts to move north the "record yield" story is going to be a thing of the past. Keep in mind...Click to read more. 
  2. Fewer Harvested acres: I believe "harvested acres" are still overstated, best guess maybe by 1-2 million. My concern is also that a large portion of the "preventive plant" acres were in quality corn producing country. Meaning it could influence total production more than in any of the past several years.  
  3. Contrarian Theory: Making money following the herd rarely proves to be a  prosperous venture. Getting in front of the herd, yes, but following...No! From my perspective everybody and their brother has jumped on the "bearish corn bandwagon" the past few months. 
  4. Pulled higher by soybeans: There is a possibility that we haven't read the final chapter in the 2013 soybean thriller.  Yield estimates for soybeans are all over the map, currently ranging from 37-43 bushels per acre. No one seems to have a good grip as of yet on total production. My guess is a final yield of....Click to read more.
  5. Chinese Demand: China's demand for soybeans has been stronger than anticipated. Some now thinking their current demand could exceed the USDA 's estimate of 59 million metric tons, and is starting to make the USDA's projection of 69 million metric tons next year more believable.  Lets also keep in mind their wheat demand was greatly underestimated (due to domestic production losses) and talk is now circulating that their corn demand could be grossly understated as well. Remember...Click to read more.
  6. La Nina in full-force: With South America's planting and growing season right around the next corner (actually starting in some areas), I have to suspect weather headlines from South America will soon start to influence the trade in some capacity. If things start to turn more dry we could quickly see production estimates for South America start to ease. Keep in mind parts of Argentina are already well behind their traditional pace for moisture, so are parts of Brazil. 
  7. Increasing ethanol demand: With ethanol margins extremely strong and threat of war in the middle-east keeping crude oil prices elevated, I am starting to think corn used to produce ethanol could be understated. Some in the industry believe if crude stays at these levels we could add 300-400 million bushels to corn demand. If nothing else certainly enough to offset what many believe are inflated export numbers. 
  8. Shorter time cycles: As I have mentioned time and time again, traditional fundamentalist are finding it more and more difficult to time the markets. High frequency trading and shorter cycles are making longer-term perspectives tougher to manage. Ultimately the fundamentals of "supply and demand" float to the top, but drowning in the wakes has become a real concern.  My hunch is until the headline waters become more calm or smooth I am afraid the fundamentalist will continue to gasp for air. Keep in mind we are clearly in a "transitionary" phase. The words "transitionary phase" do NOT go hand-in-hand with the words "calm" or "smooth," an environment the fundamentalist thrive tend to thrive in. 
  9. Weather Extremes: As I mentioned above, "fundamentalist" thrive on predictability. Meaning everything looks good on paper...until it doesn't! From my perspective the "weather" is clearly in a cycle of UNPREDICTABILITY, which makes many "supply and demand" assumptions worth only the paper they are written on. 
  10. The Risk-to-Reward: As corn prices drift lower and lower, perhaps to sub-$4 levels the burden of risk shifts clearly to the upside. Meaning $4.00 corn could have another $1.00 of downside risk, but some $4.00 or more of upside potential. Money-managers love limited risk to high reward scenarios. My thinking is....Click to read more.
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COMMENTS (1 Comments)

petrus - paranapanema
11 . Brazil just went of two years with a super super second crop harvest. Total corn in Brazil used to be around 50 million metric tons, last year 75, this year 80 million tons, luckily helping suply in north americas dry year. Brazilian second crop is very sensitive to lack of rain (that is the normal situation). If conditions go back to normal, I think brazilian corn crop can go back to the 50 or 60 million metric tons what is just enough for domestic demand.
5:29 AM Sep 10th
 

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