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Why you should watch the Weekly Close

Grain fundamentals are still supportive, yet outside market influences may win short term

Naomi Blohm, senior market adviser

October 29, 2020

5 Min Read
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After a firm start to the trading week, price sentiment changed quickly after talk that portions of Europe would shut down again due to a resurgence of COVID-19. This news spooked the stock market, causing the Dow to tumble over 900 points on Wednesday. Crude oil futures followed, on fears that another global pandemic shut down would lead to less fuel consumption. Add to it month-end position squaring and traders preferring to head to the sidelines ahead of the elections, and a wave of profit-taking washed over many commodity markets.

Funds take profits

Grain futures tested significant overhead resistance early in the week. Corn had short term resistance near the $4.25 level, with soybean futures having resistance near $11.  With a lack of immediate friendly news to allow futures prices to clear those price resistance points, instead, prices went lower.

Fund traders had been long over 200,000 contracts of corn and soybeans. On Wednesday alone this week, it was estimated that funds sold just over 50,000 contracts of corn and 25,000 contracts of soybeans, sealing the deal on profits from long positions.


According to both the 5-year and 15-year price pattern, seasonally corn and soybean futures have a tendency to trade sideways to lower during the month of November. This makes sense as the last of harvest pressure is traditionally seeing grain not able to be stored at home, instead head to local grain elevators. Starting in December, trade then traditionally turns its attention to the ever important growing season happening in South America. This year, there is no room for South America to have an imperfect crop thanks to strong global grain demand and a smaller-than-expected U.S. crop.

Related:Midweek Markets: Special election edition

Weekly Charts

Is the lower price action this week a fluke? The short term high? Or just an opportunity for end users to be able to secure grain needs on this price correction? The weekly price close for grains may leave us with the final answer.

For December corn futures, prices started the week with gains, trading at a high of $4.22-1/4 which beat last week’s high of $4.20. Last weekly low was $4.00-3/4, and so a close below $4.00-3/4 would be a bearish key reversal on a weekly chart.

For January soybean futures (yes I’m skipping November because it is about to go into first notice day and the delivery period) last week’s high was $10.86. This week’s high was 10.88-1/2. A close below last week’s low $10.48-1/4 would signify a bearish key reversal on a weekly chart.

A bearish key reversal would be a “text book” topping signal that might catch the attention of speculators and fund traders. While the fundamentals for grains right now are absolutely supportive, sometimes technical selling wins out in the short term. Especially with a major presidential election thrown into the mix, and global trade action will likely be extremely volatile in the coming weeks!

Related:Ignore chatter to succeed at marketing

In hindsight, there were bullish key reversals back in August on both weekly corn and soybean charts. At the time, we didn’t understand why the market was bottoming .After all, there was supposed to be 3 billion bushel corn carryout. But the bottoming action stuck, and the news of horrible August weather and improved export demand sent prices soaring!

And now, is the corn and soybean market potentially providing a technical topping signal? It is all dependent on Friday’s closing prices. Fresh bullish fundamental news needs to show up quick, or technical selling and outside market influence may win out in the short term.

‘I can’t sell now, it’s a down market’

No thanks. Don’t be that farmer. Focus on the bigger picture; corn prices are still 80 cents off the lows! Soybean futures are still $1.75 off the lows. Shift your perspective! Are you wondering if you should sell some grain? Look at prices; there is currently no carry in the market. The market is still not paying you to store your corn or soybeans, so stop and be aware of the marketing opportunities in front of you.

You must manage both the risk and potential reward in the weeks and months ahead!

Grain fundamentals as still supportive due to a smaller U.S. crop and improved Chinese demand, but with the election and “COVID 2.0” resurfacing, the outside markets may have the short term influential win. Be vigilant.


 Reach Naomi Blohm: 800-334-9779 Twitter: @naomiblohm   and [email protected]



Disclaimer: The data contained herein is believed to be drawn from reliable sources but cannot be guaranteed. Individuals acting on this information are responsible for their own actions. Commodity trading may not be suitable for all recipients of this report. Futures and options trading involve significant risk of loss and may not be suitable for everyone. Therefore, carefully consider whether such trading is suitable for you in light of your financial condition. No representation is being made that scenario planning, strategy or discipline will guarantee success or profits. Any decisions you may make to buy, sell or hold a futures or options position on such research are entirely your own and not in any way deemed to be endorsed by or attributed to Total Farm Marketing. Total Farm Marketing and TFM refer to Stewart-Peterson Group Inc., Stewart-Peterson Inc., and SP Risk Services LLC. Stewart-Peterson Group Inc. is registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) as an introducing broker and is a member of National Futures Association. SP Risk Services, LLC is an insurance agency and an equal opportunity provider. Stewart-Peterson Inc. is a publishing company. A customer may have relationships with all three companies. SP Risk Services LLC and Stewart-Peterson Inc. are wholly owned by Stewart-Peterson Group Inc. unless otherwise noted, services referenced are services of Stewart-Peterson Group Inc. Presented for solicitation

About the Author(s)

Naomi Blohm

senior market adviser, Total Farm Marketing by Stewart Peterson

Naomi specializes at helping farmers understand how to manage cash marketing needs and understand the importance of managing basis, delivery point considerations, cash flow needs and storage capacity. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a minor in Agriculture Business at the University of Wisconsin in Platteville. She has a Master of Science in Adult Education with an emphasis in Ag Economics from the UW-Platteville and a Master Certificate in Global Education, from the UW-Oshkosh.

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