Mixed finish for corn, soybeans, wheat
Soybeans were mixed on spread adjustments. China bought 378,000 tons of mostly new crop U.S. beans but tensions about COVID-19 and talk of new tariffs limited support. The totals were 136,000 tons for 2019/20 delivery and 242,000 tons for 2020/21, which starts September 1st. For now, there has been no action from either the White House or Beijing and neither side is likely to renege on what has been agreed to in the trade deal, but this could slow down Phase One purchases and complicate further trade discussions. Brazil’s government says April soybean exports were a record for any month at more than 16 million tons. Stateside, 23% of U.S. soybeans are planted, compared to the five-year average of 11%. Soybean meal and oil were up modestly.
Corn was mixed, consolidating. The USDA says 51% of U.S. corn is planted, more than expected and ahead of the 39% average, but emergence is slower than normal because of generally cool temperatures. Mexico bought 109,135 tons of U.S. corn, with 45,220 tons for this marketing year and 63,915 tons for next marketing year. The trade is also watching exports from Argentina and Brazil, along with the impact of COVID-19 on livestock feed demand and the ethanol industry. Ethanol futures were steady to higher. The U.S. Energy Information Administration’s weekly ethanol production and stocks numbers are out Wednesday. The Renewable Fuels Association says ethanol exports for March were 139.9 million gallons, down 28% from February, but about steady with March 2019. DDGS sales of 899,730 tons were up 5% on the month.
The wheat complex was mixed, with Chicago and Minneapolis up modestly and Kansas City down modestly. 55% of the U.S. winter wheat crop is rated good to excellent, up 1% on the week, largely unexpected because of recent weather in hard and soft red winter growing areas, but some hail damage could surface in next week’s report. Spring wheat planting made a decent week to week gain but is slower than normal at 29% complete, with further delays probable this week in parts of the northern U.S. Plains. Most forecasts have more welcome rainfall in dry parts of the European Union and the Black Sea region. The European Commission sees 2019/20 soft wheat exports from the European Union plus the United Kingdom at 31.8 million tons, up 1.8 million on the month.