Grain Exchange – 4/2/2020

Grain exchange update with Kasey Baker

On this beautiful day in April the sun is shining, and everyone is working hard to prepare for spring planting. 2020 seems like the year with a huge toss up on what to plant due to the drastic changes in the market. While there is no silver bullet, now more than ever is when you should be working with your Landmark Grain Marketing Specialist. The opportunities are going to lie in pre-planning, diverse contract options, and positivity from our Landmark Team.

A little market update:

Soybeans opened down 3 for May 2020. Fall has been holding a little stronger with a lot less volatility than the old crop. Basis on beans at the Gulf and other terminals have been getting tighter trying to ramp up for the Soybean Meal market.  As the ethanol market is changing there has been some interest in moving from DDGs to some sort of substitute.

Corn opened up 1 across the board. Corn seems to be over sold and with the intended planting acres on corn being over 96 million acres it is nice to see some green on the board. If you look further out in to 2021 the market is also looking a little more appealing than 2020. There is hope in the future according to the CBOT.

Wheat is down 8-9. We have seen the most drastic change on the board in wheat in the last 2 weeks. I’m not seeing may explanations for the wheat drop besides it is being held down by corn and beans. Which hopefully means it will come back around.

Farmers are the most optimistic group of people. In hope of the markets turning around call your Grain Marketing Specialist to get your offers in before you are preoccupied with spring work.

Make it a great day and stay safe!

Grain Exchange – 3/26/2020

Grain exchange update with Judy Uhlenhake

Markets are trading lower this morning.  The markets are remaining hopeful for increased export demand to China.  Export sales were big.  High unemployment number weighing on market even with the passing of the massive coronavirus bill.

Corn market is having a hard time adjusting to the slow use by the ethanol plants.  An increase in corn export sales is needed to offset the ethanol usage.

Soymeal demand is the leader in the soy complex.  Brazil and Argentina warn that delays could be seen as travel restrictions slow the flow of grain.  Argentina is starting to harvest, but farmer selling is expected to be slow due to poor peso values.  China soybean crushers are short of supply because of slow movement from South America.

Wheat has been the bright spot in the grains lately.  The market remains strong as millers around the world work to stock up on flour supply.  The US continues to work on the Chinese export market.

USDA Grain stocks and Prospective planting report will be released on Tuesday, March 31st.   Keep in touch with your grain marketing specialist to handle this quickly changing market.

Keep positive, we will weather this storm.

Grain Exchange – 3/24/2020

The markets are beginning to trade a little more independently from the equities which is a good first step. Everyone is Washington is working on stimulus packages to help US businesses get through this historic time. The Small Business Administration (less than 500 employees) has put together some great programs to help all of us get through this. These programs might include very low interest loans and credit/forbearance incentives to keep or even add employees.

Both cattle and hogs finished limit up ($3.00) yesterday with the strength expected to continue today. Panic buying by consumers and packing and processing logistic concerns drove cash cattle trade last week $10 higher than the previous week.

Corn prices made it through a choppy session with few changes Monday, with a positive round of export inspection data from USDA yesterday morning mostly undercut by emerging demand concerns coming from the struggling ethanol sector. May futures dipped 0.25 cents lower to $3.43 with July futures holding steady at $3.49.

Soybean prices continue to move higher in tandem with soymeal futures, fueled by an uptick in demand from the livestock sector. May futures jumped another 21.5 cents higher Monday, closing at $8.84, while July futures gained 20.75 cents to reach $8.85. Soybeans showed excellent gains yesterday on slow loading in South America and China soybean processors needing beans, and chatter about more interest from China. Less ethanol production means lower DDG availability equals more meal demand.

Wheat prices surged more than 4% higher Monday as a wave of panic buying of food staples spurred a round of technical buying today. May Chicago SRW futures gained 23 cents to $5.62 May. Egypt could import around 472.2 million bushels of wheat during the 2020/21 marketing year, according to the latest estimates from USDA-FAS. That’s a moderate uptick from last year, due to higher population growth and overall consumption.


Grain Exchange 3-19-20

Grain exchange update with Melissa Schmidt

Happy Thursday!  Currently markets are making a recovery.  Make sure to stick with your market plans and talk with us if you need cash flow.  We can still provide solutions for you during this time.

Exports are helping the market.  See table below for numbers:

With March 31st coming soon, we are starting to see estimates as to acres and what is going to get planted.  Commodity brokerage Allendale Inc. estimated 2020 U.S. corn acreage at 94.6 million, with soybeans at 83.7 million, according to an annual survey; that would be above the USDA’s 94.0 million ac for corn, but below 85.0 million acres for soybeans. All-wheat acreage came in at 44.5 million acres, vs the 45.0 million USDA.

If you have not figured out your cost of production, with wet weather would be a great time to sit down and do that.  This year is very important to know where and when you need to sell.  Please call grain origination team to plan.  Stay positive, it is spring!

Grain Exchange 3-17-20

Grain exchange update with Katie Demrow

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Did you know that the four leaves of the clover represent Hope, Faith, Love and Luck? Here’s to hoping we all find a little Luck of the Irish soon!

As the market volatility continues through the midst of COVID-19 pandemic, markets are steady to neutral as we start off the Tuesday morning after a tough Monday. Yesterday President Trump encouraged U.S. citizens to practice social distancing, while active cases of the Corona Virus outside of China surpassed 100,000 overnight. While the spread seems to be slowing in China, Italy, Spain, France, Germany and Iran have all reported at least 1,000 new cases. Exporters from Argentina are experiencing shipping delays at their ports because of confusion of COVID-19 mandated policies.

The livestock market has also been feeling the pain of the markets, as slaughter plants are trying their best to remain open. Staffing is a major concern as plants must keep enough employees on hand to complete the processes, inspections and administration activities that are necessary.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Mnuchin is working to pass a benefits package that would expand the paid family and sick leave for companies with less than 500 people to help combat the impact of the virus. Wisconsin has now followed suit by closing schools to help control the spread of the virus.

The 6-10 day forecast is showing below normal temperatures and widespread precipitation for the U.S.  Argentina should see some rainfall today but will then be dry the rest of the week. Southern Brazil should also see some rain that will bring a little bit of relief to their second corn crop. Locally, we’re expecting to see a storm system move in across much of the area late this afternoon and into tonight.

Have a great day!


Grain Exchange 3-12-20

With all the breaking news surrounding the virus it is easy to see why grain markets are lower today, markets in general moving that direction.  Asian equity markets down, European equity markets lower and of course our domestic market experienced a decline.   Travel bans and reducing travel is certainly not bullish energy/ethanol.  As we move through the virus issue, we will still need to define S/D, watch the northern hemisphere planting progress and restock diminished supply where virus interruptions have occurred.

China published a list of 88 U.S. suppliers that can now export DDGS to the country.  This indicates that China will allow imports of US DDGS for the first time since 2017.  This follows talk this week that China is interested.  This week printed strong corn and Sorghum sales while wheat was a disappointment.  Soybean exports sales included Chinese net cancellations. No USDA sales announcements this morning.  Ethanol stocks where lower this week as well.  Rosario Grain Exchange lowered their estimate of Argentina’s soybean crop and held corn steady.


Grain Exchange 3-10-20

Grain exchange update with Kasey Baker

Weather outside has us thinking SPRING! It’s a great feeling to see the sun and have the snow starting to dwindle away. To top if off Pike County Illinois has posted to Twitter the start of bean planting. Are you getting ready??

Corn is up 4 after quite the dive yesterday. Wall Street appears to be stronger despite the Coronavirus scares across the world. The WADSE report was released with no change in predicted planting or harvested acres. There was also no change in beginning/ending stocks for corn from February to March. The report suggested the average price will go down 5 more cents from February to March for harvest delivery corn.

Beans are up 7-9, also recovering from yesterdays losses. Brazil is about 50% complete with their harvest and the vessels are lining up to export the beans. WADSE also reported for soybeans no change in planted or harvested acres from February to March. There was again no change in the beginning/ending stocks. Like corn the soybeans price average price did go down 5 cents as well.

Wheat is down 1-4 cents. Reports of down production in Texas. Chatter about China purchasing wheat but the place of origin is still unknown. There was also no change the WADSE Report for the wheat from February to March.

Have you talked to your originator since the winter meeting? Now is a great time to get your marketing plan and offers for new crop in place. Your originator has a few tools in the shed to help your farming operation in 2020. If you have written check for your grain inputs, you should be thinking about a sale of grain to cover those costs.

Enjoy the sun & stay safe


Grain Exchange 3-5-20

Grain exchange update with Judy Uhlenhake

The same old tune keeps playing in the grain markets. Demand is sluggish and coronavirus worries keeps weighing down the grain markets. Export sales this morning are neutral corn and wheat and negative soybeans.

Corn continues to trade in a narrow range. Ethanol could add some strength to the market with the Trump administration directing the EPA to scale back exemptions for refineries.

Soybeans continue to struggle with the lack of demand. South America is seeing good yields. The recent tax increase in Argentina could slow future soybean production.

Wheat continues to trade lower. A couple things that may lend support to wheat is lack of snow cover in Russia and US winter wheat exiting dormancy early would expose wheat to cold snap damage.

Let’s change gears and focus on a marketing plan. A grain marketing plan is a proactive strategy to price grain, considering cash flow needs, profitability, anticipated production and your adaptability to risk management. The goal of a marketing plan is to be proactive and not reactive.

The first step of a plan is to know your cost of production. Your marketing plan should cover your critical costs, increase income and reduce risk. Once cost is established you can set pricing goals and target dates. Setting sales deadlines that correspond to seasonally higher prices will help meet your target price. Set your target price and stick to it.

Utilize open offers to meet your pricing goals. The reason for a marketing plan is to help take some of the emotion out of the equation. Utilize different marketing tools available to you. Landmark offers a variety of contracts to help diversify your plan. Our contracts are available delivered to your nearest Landmark elevator, direct ship market or picked up on the farm.

Hitting the high price is an unrealistic goal but selling in steps as the market goes higher is achievable. Make a plan and stick to it, you will minimize the emotions.

Reminder that the deadline to sign up for our average grain price contract is March 13th. The averaging period is daily from March 16th to July 10th.

Landmark has a great team of grain marketing specialists who can help you develop a grain marketing plan. Think spring and stay safe.

Grain Exchange 3-3-20

The new trading month started off with a bang as record U.S. equity gains helped pull almost all major commodity markets higher after last week’s meltdown. While all the problems that drove last week’s losses are far from solved, the threat of a certain world economic slowdown have been priced in the markets for the time being. When CV cases start to decrease worldwide, the path will be clear enough to get back to a normal trade.

Corn had another good week, but we still are behind the pace needed by 280 million bushels. Soybeans had their 3rd worse total of the year but the pace remains ahead of the USDA by 193 million bushels. Wheat was great compared to estimates.

Corn prices moved steadily higher throughout Monday’s session on a round of technical buying and short covering, further buoyed by another round of solid export inspection data from USDA yesterday morning. Futures closed around 2% higher, with March futures gaining 8 cents to $3.74 and May futures adding 7 cents to $3.75.

Soybean prices started Monday’s session with moderate overnight gains and jumped even higher at the open, holding fairly steady after that to close nearly 1% higher on a round of technical buying and short covering. March futures added 7 cents to $8.90, with May futures up 8 cents to $9.01.

Wheat prices were mixed but mostly higher on some uneven technical maneuvering Monday. A late-breaking rally pulled some contracts into the green yesterday, but not all of them were able to do so. May Chicago SRW futures eased 1.75 cents to $5.23, May Kansas City HRW futures gained 4.75 cents to $4.58, and May MGEX spring wheat futures picked up 0.75 cents to $5.28.

Last week’s Grain marketing meetings held throughout the Landmark hubs where a great success. Thank you to all who attended. One of our most popular contracts the “Average Price contract” is for new crop corn and beans. The contract runs March 16th. through July 10th. and is designed to pick up the historic highs of the marketing year. Give your Grain Marketing Specialist at Landmark a call to find out more details. The deadline for sign up is March 13th.

Have a great day,

Jim Fleming

Grain Exchange 2-27-20

Grain exchange update with Melissa Schmidt

Spring officially starts in 21 days!  Markets continue to be soft with uncertainty with coronavirus.  Exports were on the lower side of expectations (see below).  Exports of corn went to Japan, Mexico, Costa Rica and one cargo to South Korea.  Corn continues to be sourced from the Black Sea and South America opposed to the U.S.  South America continues to be the choice for bean exports with their currencies weakening.  Meal rallied early yesterday over reports Argentine government will propose an increased export tariff due to farmer/Ag protests.

Wheat futures are weaker with no threat of weather conditions affecting the current U.S. crop.

Stay active in the markets whether it is buying fuel for this year or beyond.  Make sure to book fertilizer ahead of spring busy season, as currently they remain flat.  Talk to your grain marketing specialist regarding offers ahead of spring.  Write down a plan and share it with us ahead of your busy season!

Enjoy the sun!

Melisa Schmidt