Morning Commentary

May corn down 2 ¾ at $3.745

May beans down 4 ¼ at $8.965

The DOW is down

USD is stronger

Crude oil down $.04 at $59.90

Good morning,

Corn bulls are running into some stiffer resistance on the charts. Prices have rallied about +20 cents from the March 12th low, but now seem to have hit a wall. Keep in mind, the MAY19 contract has both the 100-Day and 200-Day Moving Averages up between the $3.80 and $3.85 area. Meaning it might be tough to cross those levels with the current headlines. Insiders argue the bulls need some fresh news to keep the momentum going. It’s hard to imagine we need more headlines when we have massive flooding in three large production states like Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota. Keep in mind, there’s also flooding in parts of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Missouri, Illinois, Colorado, North Dakota, etc… Nearby the trade is eager to see the USDA scheduled for release on Friday. Most sources are thinking the USDA will make only a slight adjustment lower in their 2019 planted corn acreage estimate. The Ag Outlook Forum tossed out an early guess at 92 million planted acres vs. 89.129 million this past year.

Soybean prices have done very little the past couple of weeks. Most contracts have traded within a 20 cent range and the market seems comfortable waiting on more insight about Chinese trade, African Swine Fever, and U.S. planted acreage.  Here at home, traders are interested in the USDA’s take on planted acreage in 2019. At the Ag Outlook, the USDA tossed out an early estimate of 85 million acres, which was well below the 89.129 million acres planted this past season. This provided the bulls with a little hope that the U.S. balance sheet could be trimmed.

China could buy as much as 300,000 MT of US Pork in 2019. Some insiders believe that number could be grossly underestimated as they have already purchased 200,000 MT of US pork in January and February alone.

A new Council of Agricultural Science and Technology, or CAST, paper examines the causes and consequences of groundwater depletion throughout the U.S. with a focus on how this will affect agriculture—the largest sector of groundwater use. The paper, “Aquifer Depletion and Potential Impacts on Long-term Irrigated Agricultural Productivity,” was co-authored by Dr. John Tracy, Texas A&M University’s Texas Water Resources Institute director, College Station. The paper noted the U.S. aquifer system with the greatest long-term groundwater storage depletion is the Ogallala Aquifer in the Great Plains region, where groundwater levels have declined by more than 150 feet in some areas. “Increased competition for the use of water from aquifers may negatively affect future agricultural practices in drier regions of the U.S,” Tracy said. “The problem needs to be addressed over the long haul and by avoiding promoting policies that focus on quick fixes that will ultimately fail.” It was mentioned that some strategies to mitigate impacts of aquifer depletion may include policy, technology and management options, which should take into account local/regional conditions, including hydrogeological factors, applicability to agricultural production systems and economic factors.

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