Morning Commentary

March corn down ¾ at $3.6975

March beans down 4 ¾ at $9.07

The DOW is down

USD is weaker

Crude oil up $.06 at $55.54

Good morning,

Corn prices have been pulled lower by the fallout in wheat, and no detailed confirmation or plan for the Chinese buying U.S. corn, ethanol, DDGs or sorghum. Bulls continue to hold out hope and believe the Chinese announcement will come to fruition in the days or weeks ahead. Unfortunately, bears are moving closer and bulls are getting a bit more nervous. Weekly export inspections were a bit lower than most inside the trade expected. Hence, bears have been shooting a few more holes in U.S. demand growth, especially with ethanol back on its heels a bit, and wheat perhaps working its way into some cattle feed rations.

Soybean bulls are happy to hear China is committed to buying more U.S. soybeans. Unfortunately, bears are quick to point to overly burdensome supply and continued concerns regarding weakening Chinese prices and overall demand. The spreading of Africa Swine Fever has become a very real concern and continues to bring about more longer-term uncertainties. We also have the Brazilian harvest moving along at a record pace and closing in on 50% complete, which means more supply coming available in the global marketplace. The good news is weekly U.S. export inspections were reported better than expected and China is committed to buying another 10 MMTs of U.S. beans.

Bayer AG on Monday faced a second U.S. jury over allegations that its popular glyphosate-based weed killer Roundup causes cancer, six months after the company’s share price was rocked by a $289 million verdict in California state court. The lawsuit by California resident Edwin Hardeman against the company began on Monday morning in federal rather than state court. The trial is also a test case for a larger litigation. More than 760 of the 9,300 Roundup cases nationwide are consolidated in the federal court in San Francisco that is hearing Hardeman’s case. (Source Reuters)

The IRS sent $324 billion back to taxpayers in 2018; the average tax refund was $2,727. According to early IRS data, tax refunds are down this year, drawing the ire of many Americans. Despite widespread belief that lower refunds are due to President Donald Trump’s new tax law raising taxes for the middle class, the truth is that most middle-income Americans received a tax cut this year, and experts say the size of a person’s refund is not indicative of their tax bill. Business Insider analyzed data from the IRS to find the average federal tax refund in each state and Washington, DC. To do so, we looked at the total income tax refund for each state for fiscal year 2017 (or tax year 2016) and divided it by the number of refunds there.

Published in December 2018, the recent report of the International Energy Agency indicates that global coal consumption is on the rise again, +1% compared to 2017. This is an alarming trend, because despite increasing international awareness of the risks of global warming due to greenhouse gas emissions, some major economies are unable to substitute their coal-based electricity with less carbon-intensive energies. Indeed, coal is mainly used for electricity production, with two-thirds of world consumption going to electricity production; this proportion rises to three-quarters if China and India, which traditionally have more widespread uses, are excluded; the rest of consumption goes to industry


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