Morning Commentary

May corn unchanged at $3.60

May beans unchanged at $8.9525

The DOW is up

USD is weaker

Crude oil up $.93 at $64.51

Good morning,

Corn bears are pointing to weaker than expected U.S. export sales data, in fact, no sales reported for new-crop. There’s also talk circulating from China grain buyers who are doubtful the Chinese government will agree to buy 10 MMTs of U.S. corn for the immediate future. The trend is negative.  Closing under 351.25 should lead to a test of the low 340 area.  Stable action over 373.25 is needed to improve the short term outlook.  Based on the trade count, look for the fund to be record short (276,000 lots) in tonight’s CIT report. 

Soybean traders are also pointing to weaker than expected U.S. soybean exports. The USDA showed only 270,400 metric ton were exported form the U.S. last week, a number that was down over -70% from the previous four-week average. Let’s not forget, at the same time the South America crop estimates are creeping higher and U.S. planted soybean acres might also be pushing higher. There’s also continued talk and rumors of African Swine Fever doing more damage than currently estimated to the Chinese pork industry. Bottom-line, with ample supply globally, near record supply here in the U.S., and the worlds top buyer of soybeans walking back demand estimates, it’s tough for the bulls to string together much momentum, especially without a wide-spread weather story. The trend is negative.  Closing under 890.75 opens the door for a drop to 877.75.  Stable action over 910.75 is needed to improve the short term outlook.  

Kentucky Fresh Harvest, a hydroponic greenhouse operator, raised $520,000 through a crowdfunding appeal for money to build a facility that could grow 3 to 4 million cherry tomatoes a year. Hydroponics is a method of growing plants without soil by using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent. (Source: HortiDaily)

Farmers can now for the first time insure their produce against price volatility as easily as insuring their homes, with a global platform based on hundreds of niche commodity indexes, underwritten by Lloyd’s of London syndicate Ascot. The new products have been made possible by recent advances in data science and the reduced cost of running the trillions of computer simulations needed to calculate risks across the portfolio of commodity indexes used by the platform’s developer Stable. I’m told Stable is a British-based start-up whose investors include agrochemical company Syngenta, seed stage investor Anthemis Group and Swiss insurer Baloise Group, as well as Ascot. From what I understand, there have been about 450 farmers to use the platform so far, which has been running for eight weeks. It will be interesting to see what traction the platform gets moving forward and when or if it becomes available in the U.S. At the moment, the platform is currently available for farmers in Britain, France, Russia, South Africa, Poland, the Netherlands, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Brazil, Uruguay, Sweden, Croatia, Portugal and Spain.


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