May corn up 2 ¼ at $3.6325
May beans up 4 at $8.9925
The DOW is up
USD is weaker
Crude oil down $.50 at $63.39
Corn traders continue to monitor U.S. weather and Chinese trade negotiations. Heavy snows across the northern Plains, some areas dealing with +24 inches, and rains in the forecast, continue to complicate 2019 planting. Funds remain aggressively short, believing there’s plenty of time left on the calendar to get the crop planted. Traditionally, most insiders have always talked about 80% of the entire U.S. crop being planted by about the third week of May. If that begins to look unachievable, I suspect we will see the bears start to backpedal a bit and few more weather bulls enter the market. Unfortunately, the combination of the greatest producers in the world and the best technology available, now makes it possible for 30% to 40% of the entire U.S. crop to get planted in just one week with the right window of opportunity.
Soybean bulls are hoping U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s positive comments over the weekend regarding Chinese trade negotiations will help keep prices supported. U.S. weather is being digested as mixed to slightly bearish as traders see heavy snow, rains and delays to corn planting perhaps leading to more soybean acres? Bears also point to South American supplies become more readily available, their crop production estimates creeping higher, and more longer-term uncertainties involving China and the negative impact of African Swine Fever.
Rabobank is reporting that up to 200 million pigs could be culled or die form being infected as African Swine Fever spreads through China. By far, this is the highest such forecast yet and underscores the gravity of the epidemic in the world’s top pork producer. Such a number would mark a huge chunk of the nation’s pig herd, which stood at 360 million animals late last year. (Source: Reuters)
China’s soybean imports in March jumped 10% from the previous month, as shipments from both the United States and Brazil reached the world’s top oilseed buyer, customs data showed on Friday. China imported 4.92 million tonnes in March, up from 4.46 million tonnes in February, according to data from the General Administration of Customs. Imports were still down 13% from the same month a year earlier.
Last week, Vietnam announced it is banning the importation of glyphosate. It came after the most recent glyphosate verdict went against Bayer in a California court. U.S. Sec. of Ag Sonny Perdue spoke out about the decision saying this would have devastating impacts on global agricultural production. Vietnam’s government said in a statement that the toxic level of herbicides containing glyphosate had long been of concern and the ban would take effect in June. Perdue said the U.S. government had shared scientific studies with Vietnam concluding that glyphosate is unlikely to pose a carcinogenic hazard to humans. (Source: USDA)
For four decades, the average age of farmers has been on the rise. It was 50.3 years for the “principal operator” in the 1978 census, 53.3 years in 1992, 57.1 years in 2007, 58.3 years in 2012, and now is 59.4 years. By contrast, the average age of new and beginning farmers is 46.3 years, says the 2017 census.