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Grains Futures Prices

Sun, May 31st, 2020
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Futures Market News and Commentary

Corn Closes Lower on Friday Pullback

Corn futures were down 1 1/4 to 1 3/4 cents following the Thursday gains. Private exporters reported a large sale of 101,600 MT of 2019/20 corn to unknown this morning under the daily reporting system. That had little impact. USDA’s weekly Export Sales report showed 473,685 MT of corn bookings for the week ending 05/21. That came via 427,185 MT of old crop and 46,500 MT of new crop, both of which were below expectations. Corn exports from the same week were 1.06 MMT, which was down 16% wk/wk and down 38% yr/yr. The CFTC’s weekly update this afternoon showed as of May 26 corn spec traders were net short 276,203 contracts. That was 30,817 contracts more bearish than last week. It was also the largest net short position since April of last year’s record. Unwinding from that record took only 5 weeks and was accompanied by a 14.6% rally during the same time.

Jul 20 Corn closed at $3.25 3/4, down 1 3/4 cents,

Sep 20 Corn closed at $3.30, down 1 3/4 cents, Read more

Wheat Added more Gains

The U.S. wheat markets continued the gains from yesterday closing the week 2.2 to 5.8% higher. KC was up the most on Friday closing 6 to 6 1/2 cents higher. For July that was a 5.8% gain on the week. SRW wheat futures closed 4 1/4 to 6 1/4 cents higher, up 2.5% from Fri to Fri. July spring wheat futures gained 5 3/4 cents on Friday for a week’s move of 2.2%. The other front months closed the Friday session with 4 1/4 to 5 cent gains. USDA reported old crop wheat sales for the week ending May 21 at 209,783 MT. New crop wheat sales from the report were above trader expectations, with 496,539 MT sold. Shipments from the report added 561,235 MT to the accumulated 23.725 MMT. That is 90% of the May forecast with 2 weeks left, commitments are already above the forecast. In the weekly CoT report, managed money were net buyers of SRW wheat wk/wk reducing their net short to 12,204 contracts. In HRW wheat managed money was 25,743 contracts net short on 05/26. Funds added 12,226 shorts wk/wk.... Read more

Soy Complex Closes in Red

Friday trading closed the week with losses of less than 1%. Old crop futures were down 5 to 6 1/4 cents and new crop soybeans settled 1 to 4 1/4 cents lower. Soybean meal futures closed with $1.1 to $1.70/ton losses on Friday. Front month soy oil futures ended firm with losses of only 3 points. USDA’s mandatory reporting system this morning reported 132,000 MT of soybeans were sold to China, split 50/50 old/new crop. From the Export Sales report, soybean bookings totaled 847,252 MT on the week ending May 21. That was half of last week’s but double the same week last year. Bean bookings in the report were split 644k and 203k MT old and new crop. Soybean meal bookings were 127,221 MT, which was on the low end of trader estimates. The report showed soybean oil sales were well above expectations at 56,599 MT. Soy oil sales were down from last week’s sales, which were the 2nd highest for the MY, but still 61.2% above the same week from last year. The average analyst estimate ahead of Mon... Read more

HRW Wheat: Oklahoma Cash

Hard red winter (HRW) wheat harvest is expected to finally start to progress this coming week, with a friend of mine at the Kansas Wheat Commission expecting combines to reach south-central Oklahoma possibly this weekend. If not, then early next week should see one of my favorite events of the year, HRW wheat harvest, expand rapidly. Add in weather forecasts calling for more summer like conditions across much of the Southern Plains this coming week and harvest will be going full bore before we know it. Given all this, I thought it would be interesting to take a look at the cmdty HRW Wheat Regional Price Index for south-central Oklahoma (KEPAOK80.CM if you’d like to plug the symbol in on your cmdtyView system) chart to see what things look on the threshold of harvest. Last Friday (May 29) saw the regional index priced at roughly $4.97 3/4, up 6 cents for the day and nearly 26 cents for the holiday-shortened week. This was an interesting move, though not overly surprising looking at the seasonal patterns (again on the cmdtyView system). Seasonally, the south-central Oklahoma regional index tends to rally through the early part of harvest, normally topping out in the June timeframe before posting a sharp sell-off into an abrupt August low. All that having been said, last week’s close is near the high end of what the index has posted, similar to the $5.03 registered at the close of May 2018 on the way to a high of $5.41 1/2 at the conclusion of July that same year, before falling to a low monthly close of $3.98 at the end of August 2019. Darin Newsom President Darin Newsom Analysis Inc.
Soybean Basis and Bias

We all have our biases, a weakness that makes us see things that aren’t there or not see things that are. When it comes to markets, my bias is an undying bearishness toward soybeans. If I were a trader, I would’ve been short for a long time, riding the market up as it went against me last fall and riding back down in my favor over the winter and spring. Heading into the summer, soybeans are at a crossroads. The futures market is doing its best corn impersonation and trending sideways, the July contract caught in a range between roughly $8.19 and $8.61, all while noncommercial traders have reportedly continued to add to their net-long futures positions over recent months (see recent CFTC Commitments of Traders reports; legacy, futures only). But perhaps my biggest blind spot is in the soybean basis market. If soybeans are as bearish as I want to think it is, the cmdty National Soybean Basis Index (NSBI, weighted national average) shouldn’t be as strong as it continues to be. In fact, I recently wrote in this space about how bullish the cmdty National Corn Basis Index looked, while the daily and weekly charts for the NSBI show similar patterns. I’ve mentioned before that there is something going on in soybean basis, beyond the normal inverse relationship between futures and basis. Perhaps I am overestimating 2019-2020 U.S. soybean stocks, though the cmdty National Soybean Price Index certainly seems to confirm my thoughts. Whatever it is, all aspects of the soybean market are set to get more interesting as we turn the calendar page from May to June, rolling from spring into summer. Darin Newsom President Darin Newsom Analysis Inc.
Corn Basis: Storming Back

Corn basis is proving to be a classic irresistible force with no immovable object to hold it back. This past Wednesday the cmdty National Corn Basis Index (NCBI, weighted national average) was calculated at 26 1/2 cents under the July futures contract, breaking through resistance on its daily chart at the previous high of 26 3/4 cents under May futures from April 29. Technically, this opens the door to a strong rally as we haven’t turned the calendar page to June meaning we have a number of weeks for national average basis to appreciate against the July contract. At that point we hit the interesting time of year when basis is rolled to the hybrid old-crop/new-crop September contract. Seasonally, the previous 5-years strongest basis posted a high weekly close of 7 3/4 cents under the September issue, the second week of July 2019. According to the cmdtyView Cost of Carry table, the July-September futures spread is sitting at a carry of 4 1/2 cents and covering a bullish 24% of calculated full commercial carry. Where does this strength continue to come from, given what supposedly was a collapse in demand over the last quarter (March to May). I will talk about this in more detail in an upcoming cmdtyView webinar on Tuesday, June 4 (check your system for more details, or send me a message), but in a nutshell demand was shifted between two of the three legs of the stool I often talk about. Most notably, feed demand likely increased as ethanol demand decreased, meaning a drop in dried distillers grain supplies. But again, I’ll discuss more in the upcoming webinar. Darin Newsom President Darin Newsom Analysis Inc.
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