COMMENTARY 2/25/16

Argentina crops are experiencing their first and second warmest and fifth and third wettest Feb’s since 1980.  Their outlook is wetter as a cooler pattern slides in over the weekend bringing storms to the already soaked.  In Brazil, occasional storms are forecast to produce 2.5″ to 5.0″ in S Brazil and Paraguay over the next 10 days.  N Brazil isn’t expecting any big changes with below normal rainfall and above normal temps tend to dominate.

St Louis river level ~STEADY  ~ at 15.2′ and forecast to be 15.0′ by  2/29.

 CORN

DOWN 4

The USDA says planted area will likely increase 2 million acres to 90.0.  In exchange, we are enjoying low fuel and fertilizer compliments of cheap crude. Corn acres at 90 million compares to 88.0 last year and a pre-forum average trade est of 89.7 million and the earlier released (December 11th)  90.5 million acre. The IGC too raised its global prod estimate by 10 MMT to 969 million.  Cheap domestic corn prices are expected by some to reduce Chinese ethanol imports to zero in the coming year.  China (after Canada) was the US’s largest export market over Sep-Dec, consuming some 225 million liters.  Indonesia expects to  import 200 K MT less corn in the first quarter compared to the 600 K MT they originally projected.  Thur’s Export Sales were mid-range at 36.8  vs expectations of 28-47 mill bu.  The four week avg of 34.6 matches last year and the 5 yr average.  Finally!! We had a better week with Japan at 13.2 mill bu.  Costa Rica, Colombia, and Mexico each took 4-5 mill bu with 21.5/week to meet USDA.  In SA, 51% of the crop is planted, 13 points ahead of a year ago and 1st crop corn harvest is 23% complete, 2 points ahead of last year.

 

BEANS     

DOWN 9

 The USDA acreage estimate fell 800 K acres short of the average range of 82.0 – 85.0 but was seemingly ignored. Brazil harvest continues with favorable yields.  Export Sales were weaker than needed at 12.1  vs expectations of 11-26 and 5.2 needed per week. China did buy another 9.9 million and 7.4 were sold to Europe.  We are STILL waiting on SA to have trouble loading their bean vessels and with today’s further Board decline is IS noticeably more desperate.  Meal Exports were mid-range at 172 vs expectations of 100-250 and 89 needed per week.  Some 82 K went to the Philippines and 40 to Turkey.  Bean Oil was 3.2 and short of the trade’s 5-20 K MT expectation.

 

 WHEAT          

UP 2

The USDA reduced wheat acres by 3.6 million and shockingly enough, Export Sales were near the high end of trade ideas. Results were 14.3  vs expectations of 7-15 and 9 per week needed.  3.6 million sold for new crop. China bought 2.1 old crop.  Planted wheat area is 51 mill acres vs the average trade guess of 52.4 and compares to 54.6 last year.