Special Market Update

Grain Market Commentary

Monday, May 18, 2020

By Tiffany Weitzel, Originations Merchant, The Andersons

After near perfect planting conditions rain set in over the weekend over most of the corn belt, lingering for a few days but settling into above seasonal temps in the 11-15 day forecast. We’re expecting to see a large increase in planted acres nationally bringing us over 80% planted.

One headline today is the Chinese government encouraging grain purchases, as they are fearing another widespread outbreak of the coronavirus globally and supplies dwindling. However, the China – U.S. relationship continues its rocky stance as over the weekend United States raised threats over telecoms equipment giant Huawei Technologies and China's treatment of journalists in Hong Kong.  Continued push from U.S. officials to urge American companies to move key suppliers and manufacturing out of China. Talk of the trade deal seems to be barely a whisper as everyone is focused on the pandemic. Although Friday White House official Larry Kudlaw assured that deal is absolutely not falling apart and things are still in negotiations.

Hopefully as sign of what is to come, The Dow Ind was up 1000, European stock markets were up today, and crude was the highest it’s been in two months as some states relax their stay at home orders. Ethanol has begun its recovery as well, awaiting a vote Friday that may bring the industry closer to receiving federal aid. Plants that had idled or reduced rates have begun to come back online. Output is 40% less than a year ago but stocks are 9% greater.

Brazil is seeing record soybean exports, but they won’t be able to keep up that pace. It is assumed all shipments are headed to china. U.S. corn export inspections were up while beans were down.

Producers should be paying attention to the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program – CFAP updates. Producers will be eligible for payments regardless of size. Right now, forms and information are available by visiting https://www.farmers.gov/cfap However nothing should be sent to the USDA without talking to your local FSA office. If you participated in PPP, it does not impact your ability for CFAP.