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The spotlight in the grains remains on Argentina’s production. USDA shed some light on the situation this week when it reduced their estimate 5.0 million tons to 47.0 million— 2.5 million tons less than a year ago. This may be the lowest estimate for the season as recent showers have helped to stabilize conditions. Meanwhile, exports are disappointing. Inspections last week were mediocre at 18.9 MB, their lowest since early January. China was a no show, which has not happened since early November. The recent spat with China regarding a surveillance balloon means that we could see less of China as they will likely source more of their corn needs from Brazil. Be aware that the USDA raised Brazil’s export estimate 3.0 million tons in the supply-demand report.
Soybeans have been underpinned for weeks from the production shortfall in Argentina. This week, the USDA lowered their production 4.5 million tons to 41.0 million and is 2.9 million tons less than a year ago. While Brazil’s crop was unchanged at 153.0 million tons; their exports were raised 1.0 million. In other matters, U.S. exports were supportive this week with inspections of 67.2 MB. This was the fourth week that the pace of shipments has risen. China took 42.5 MB which was also their fourth week of higher shipments. Exports to China have seen an uptick because of the delay in Brazil’s harvest caused by wet conditions. Their harvest is 9 percent complete which is behind last year’s pace of 16 percent. Once conditions improve and harvest progresses, shipments to them should diminish.
News in wheat is sparse which means the market could drift unless a development arises. Russia will likely remain a thorn in the side of U.S. exports, as the USDA increased their production 1.0 million tons and raised their exports 500,000 tons. Also, Australia’s production rose 1.4 tons and exports 500,000 tons. Meanwhile, U.S. exports have improved the past few weeks with inspections last week at 19.7 MB. However, they will continue to meet stiff competition in the global market.
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