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Grain and soy markets appear to have settled down as we prepare to finish out this week, but it will not have turned out to have been a very pleasant one for those producing these crops. Were we to close right now, December corn would be down 16-cents for the week, November beans minus 11-cents and December wheat off just over 8-cents. There is a bit of irony here in the fact that the market that is suffering the heaviest loss is the market with the most positive fundamental picture. While there could be a disrupter, such as positive news from US/China negotiations which are rumored to begin again, or maybe big weather delays, but as a whole trade focus next week will likely just be on the harvest.
African swine flu is in the news again this morning, but this time the stories are not coming from China but rather Belgium. Evidently wild boars that have died have tested positively for the virus, heightening the threat it will spread now across Western Europe. There have already been problems in Eastern Europe and as I have commented previously, the outbreak and spread in China I understand is far more widespread than official reports, and with no vaccine, there is little defensive outside of destroying infected animals. If this does become a major issue in western Europe, it could really place China is a difficult situation. When you consider 2/3rdof the meat in the Chinese diet is pork, and a potential source of imports could now have a problem, it would seem to suggest they may have little choice but to look to the US for supply. Granted, none of this is positive for the grain/soy trade, but it could be a godsend for the US hog industry that has already been punished severely this year with all the trade squabbles.
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