PRICE STRENGTH OVERNIGHT... As of 6:30 a.m. CT, corn futures are trading 1 to 2 cents higher, soybeans are 5 to 7 cents higher and wheat futures are 3 to 7 cents higher. The U.S. dollar index is weaker this morning.
HOW A GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN WOULD IMPACT USDA, SERVICES... There is no certainty as to whether a government shutdown will be the outcome of the battle over a House-passed stopgap funding measure (HJRes 59) that would withhold money from the 2010 health care law. Various agencies are undergoing plans for determining who is an essential employee and which of the agency’s responsibilities would merit continuation in a potential shutdown. The Office of Management and Budget on Sept. 17 issued a government-wide general guidance for departments and agencies. Food and meat inspectors are expected to be classified as essential personnel. Under a government shutdown scenario, Vilsack said he had the authority to designate essential employees and keep them working without pay.
ARGY AG MINISTER TALKS CROPS, EXPORT POLICY... In an exclusive interview with Reuters, Argentine Agriculture Minister Norberto Yauhar says the country's 2013-14 soybean crop will top 50 MMT and the corn crop will be in excess of 30 MMT. In this month's Supply & Demand Report, USDA forecast the 2013-14 Argentine soybean crop at 53.5 MMT and the corn crop at 26 MMT. Yauhar also told Reuters his agency is looking at ways to make the corn and wheat export system more flexible.
INITIAL CANADIAN WHEAT PROTEIN LEVELS LOWER THAN NORMAL... This year's Canadian spring wheat crop has lower-than-normal protein levels, according to initial quality data released by the Canadian Grain Commission. The early samples showed average protein levels at 13.2% in South West Manitoba, 12.7% in Southern Alberta, 12.5% in North East Saskatchewan and 12.4% in Northern Alberta at 12.4%. Those levels were behind the year-ago and 10-year averages in all four regions.
60 SENATORS: CURRENCY MANIPULATION SHOULD BE ADDRESSED IN TPP TALKS... The issue of currency manipulation should be addressed through enforceable disciplines in the pending Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) talks and in future trade pacts, a bipartisan group of 60 senators told U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) Michael Froman and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew in a letter. Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), co-chairs of the bipartisan Senate Manufacturing Caucus, spearheaded the letter. Signatories on the letter included Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), a former USTR and a member of the Senate Finance Committee. Twelve countries are engaged in TPP talks -- Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Vietnam and the United States. The Senate letter comes after 230 House members in June sent a similar letter to the president insisting new rules against currency manipulation be included in the TPP negotiations.
MOVEMENT SLOWS AS BEEF PRICES FIRM... Boxed beef prices were 22 to 26 cents higher Tuesday, building on Monday's strong gains, but movement slowed to just 119 loads. Unless the boxed beef market completely falters, however, traders will continue to look for steady to firmer cash cattle prices compared with last week's $124 trade in the Plains.
HOG TRADERS WATCHING FUTURES DISCOUNT TO CASH... October lean hog futures ended Tuesday's session at a $5.75 discount to the projected cash lean hog index for today -- and winter-month futures are at a bigger discount. Therefore, there's limited near-term downside risk for lean hog futures since the cash hog market is holding together better than expected as market-ready hog supplies have been slow to build seasonally.
OVERNIGHT DEMAND NEWS... Taiwan purchased 23,000 MT of U.S. corn and 12,000 MT of U.S. soybeans. Taiwan also bought 60,000 MT of Brazilian soybeans.