If you would like to receive our technical comments including price projections and cycle analysis for important tops and bottoms, click on the link at the bottom of the commentary to sign up for a 30-day free trial subscription. Follow Ag Watch Market Advisors on Facebook and Twitter for timely information not posted in our blog.
Corn export inspections were on fire last week setting a seasonal high of 86.7 MB. The largest shipments went to China followed by Japan. This week, China purchased 3.08 million tons. Since November, the pace of shipments has risen from 28.2 MB to 65.1 MB, or 230 percent. We must ship 59.1 MB on a weekly basis to reach USDA’s projection of 2.6 BB. For the past 3 weeks, that number has been exceeded. While the outlook looks bright for exports, the resurgence of African swine fever in China is raising concerns. Traders are keeping close tabs on the situation. Looking ahead, planting is around the corner with weather on everyone’s radar. USDA expects 92.0 million acres of corn to the planted this spring, but if Mother Nature cooperates in early April, it could be more. While the price outlook appears rosy for now, keep in mind that there is no shortage of bulls!
The long-term advance shows some signs of cracking, mostly from diminished exports. For the past several weeks, they have been on the downswing. Last week, export inspections were a marketing year low of 19.0 MB. Since November, the pace of shipments has fallen from 87.1 MB each week to 24.8 MB, a decline of 71.5 percent. Shipments to China have fallen 87.6 percent. In other developments, soybean planting will begin in a few weeks with the USDA expecting producers to plant 90.0 million acres. With the corn-soybean price relationship hovering at 2.6:1 in favor of soybeans, it could be more. While all eyes have been focused on weather in Brazil this winter, it appears that they will produce a record crop. Meanwhile, if the outbreak of African swine fever in China worsens, it could be a problem for South America’s export prospects as well.
The winter wheat crop is coming out of dormancy which means traders will monitor crop conditions closely. Recent moisture should improve conditions in areas that have been dry. More showers are forecast next week. In other developments, exports have been on the upswing the past couple of weeks with inspections last week at 25.1 MB, the third highest of the season. They must average 23.0 MB each week to reach USDA’s target of 985 MB. Look for wheat to continue to be influenced by the price direction of corn and soybeans.
Comments and suggestions are provided for information purposes only. Information contained herein is obtained from sources believed to be reliable but not guaranteed to its accuracy or completeness. Readers using the information contained herein are responsible for their own actions. No presentations can be made that recommendations will be profitable or that they will not result in losses. This information is neither an offer to sell nor solicitation to buy of the commodity futures mentioned herein. The writer may be trading in the commodities mentioned.