Was that a market eclipse?
Aug 17, 2017
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Just about everywhere you turn, we appear to be met with darkness. No, this has nothing to do with the solar eclipse that will be crossing our skies next Monday, but rather a metaphorical darkness as so much of the recent news for markets appear to have been dark and foreboding. Maybe the eclipse is a good reference after all, as in ancient times uninformed people would treat this as a warning sign for a cataclysmic event that was going to befall the earth. Maybe we should refer to the August report from last week as the total market information eclipse that cast a shadow of darkness across the commodity skies, blocking out the life-giving rays or positive news that could allow us to grow from these depths of despair, not to mention depressed prices. Too much?? Okay, but good news has been a bit sparse. Keep in mind though; markets almost always bottom when the news appears to be the most desperate.
If there is to be any exception with this, it has been with the continued interest in U.S. Soybeans. We have seen good sales reported in the daily system this week, including another 165,000 MT to China for 2017/18 crop year this morning and yesterday the Chinese delegation that was in Nebraska inked the annual contract to purchase beans (3.8 MMT). Weekly exports sales were solid as well as for the week ending August 10th; we sold another 453,200 MT or 16.66 million bushels for the current crop year. Granted, we will see sales rolled forward into new crop as at this point, it would appear physically impossible to ship them all, but it is supportive nevertheless. Back on the top of the list this week was China with purchases of 342.1k MT, followed by the Netherlands at 85.2k and then Germany with 75.9k. Then, for the 2017/18 crop year, we sold 899,400 MT or 33.05 million bushels. Yep, you guessed it, China was the top purchaser with 395.4k MT, followed by unknown destinations with 388.2k and then Taiwan for 27.8k. Evidently, lower prices did just what they were supposed to for wheat as sales rebounded very nicely with a total of 633,600 MT or 32.28 million bushels. This number was 37% above last week and 43% ahead of the 4-week average. Top sales were made to Thailand at 110.1k MT, followed by Indonesia with 90k and Mexico with 89.9k. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for old crop corn as we sold only 62,400 MT or 2.46 million bushels. If you want a positive spin on that, it was 20% above last week but was 61% lower than the 4-week average. We did see new sales of 71.9k MT to South Korea, 68.2k to China and 50.4k to Colombia but were washed out by unknown cancelations of 260.8k MT. For the 2017/18 crop year the picture was a bit brighter though with sales of 671,800 MT or 26.45 million bushels. The top purchasers were Mexico with 283.3k MT, unknown at 168.8k and Japan with 102k.
So for now, we have to wait for something fresh and the most likely suspect to bring that around will be the Pro Farmer Crop tour next week. If you listen in to Market Rally Radio each day, I will be on providing commentary about the findings. Ideally, the government inspired market eclipse will have lifted at that time.