While corn struggled to keep its head above water for the close yesterday, the others in the grain/soy complex did not and rallied, and we have now witnessed follow-through strength across all the sectors this morning. The leader of the pack would appear to be beans which in turn are led by the meal market which has now pushed into a higher high for the swing and nearly back to the wipeout session that was recorded after the August reports. The ongoing demand in the beans and products would seem to be the logical choices for the strength, but I also suspect that uncertainty surrounding the yield estimates is providing support. An old friend presented a good observation concerning the bean pod-weight that the USDA used this month. In the computation, they indicated a .340 gram pod weight, which appears to stand out by itself. This weight is 108% of last year as well as the 2012-2016 averages and would be 112% of the 2007-2011 average pods weight. While I am not qualified to suggest this may not be correct, but in lieu of the growing season we have experienced this year, it would appear to be rather optimistic. Of course, once the combines begin to really roll, we shall uncover the answers.
It is Thursday which means weekly export sales and this time we have the number for the first “official” week of the next marketing year for corn and beans, and we appear to have stepped off on the right foot. Net sales for corn came in at 1,046,700 MT or 41.21 million bushels. The top purchasers were Mexico with 433.4k MT, followed by Columbia taking 137.4k and then Turkey at 50k. With the previous sales on the books, this brings to total to 413.5 million bushels, which equates to 22.4% of the projected 1.85 billion. Another solid week of sales for beans with a net of 1,612,400 MT or 59.26 million bushels. On the top of the list is China (surprise) with 1.211 MMT followed by Indonesia with 104.3k and then Mexico with 66.1k. With the existing sales, this brings to total to 624.4 million bushels or 27.8% of the projected 2.25 billion. At the bottom, literally, we have wheat and of the week sold 316,700 MT or 11.64 million bushels. This number was 16% below last week and 34% below the 4-week average. The top purchasers were unknown destinations at 89.3k MT, followed by Colombia at 65.8k and then Turkey who purchased 50k. Of course, wheat is already 14-weeks into its marketing year, and to date, we have sold 469.4 million bushels, representing 48% of the projected 975 million.
While we still have a day and a half of trade left this week, if we were to close right now, December corn would be only 2-cents lower, December wheat nearly 9-cents higher and November beans up 15-cents. Not bad for a week of bearish government reports.