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Grain market week in review - Jan 12, 2018Grain market week in review - Jan 12, 2018

USDA drops a data dump in its final look at production for 2017, plus exports and more

January 13, 2018

4 Min Read

Missed some market news this week? Here’s a look back.

Monday, Jan. 8, 2018

USDA's biggest data dump of the year happens Friday, bringing all sorts of potential for marketing moving news. Last year, the information triggered a counter seasonal rally, Bryce Knorr says in his Monday morning market update.

Weekly corn, soybean and wheat export inspections all met the average trade guess for the week ending Jan. 4. The downside to that – analysts weren’t ex-pecting big results.

Tuesday, Jan. 9

USDA’s January reports are known for surprises, but the average guess from analysts don’t see much change on the horizon from Friday’s reports. That’s helping keep markets under wraps and focused on weather and outside influences.

Wednesday, Jan. 10

Grain futures are mixed overnight as traders prepare for Friday’s USDA reports, which aren’t expected to show major changes. After setting new record highs this week the stock market is lower today as investors focus on sharply rising bond prices, signaling higher interest rates.

Thursday, Jan. 11

Soybeans slumped to their lowest price since the end of August yesterday, pressured by forecasts for rain in Argentina and fears of slowing Chinese demand.

Wheat export sales had already set the bar plenty low, posting a 2017/18 marketing year low of 4.8 million bushels two weeks ago. But wheat sales slumped even further for the week ending Jan. 4. Corn and soybean export sales made small comebacks.

Reported export sales keep up a healthy pace this week with trades amounting to more than 20 million bushels of soybeans; and 4 million bushels of corn.

Friday, Jan. 12

Ahead of the report, Bryce Knorr expect their might be surprises as he offered commentary to start the trading day in the Morning Market Review.

USDA did their January data dump and it turns out wheat is the loser, though corn took a hit as well. Here's a look at the report numbers along with insight on the report.

In the Afternoon Market Recap, Ben Potter sums up what that USDA data dump means for the market - in a word: mixed. Check out his end-of-the-week report.

And to wrap up the week, the Market Update Podcast delves into that USDA report in a conversation with Ben Potter, senior editor, Farm Futures. He shares some of the surprises in the report including wheat acres and final corn yield.

Market outlooks

Energy/Ethanol Outlook - The dead of winter normally is a good time for growers to buy fuel they’ll need to get crops up and growing in the spring. But instead of cooling off, the energy market heated up, which could limit buying opportunities.

Wheat Outlook - Futures have sustained a decent rally over the last month, a trend that’s in line with what typically happens this time of year. The same factors driving that trend are present now: Concerns about weather and acreage. The test for the market will be whether that’s enough to keep the rebound going.

Soybean Outlook - A year ago USDA shocked the market by cutting its forecast of soybean production, helping trigger a rally that gave growers a shot at selling their record yields for a profit. But it may take even more dramatic news from the agency Jan. 12 to avoid a market that keeps falling into February. Weather in South America is also at a turning point that could be the difference.

Corn Outlook - Growers hoping for a late Christmas present from USDA on Jan. 12 may get their wish. But don’t bet on it. Unless the government delivers an historic surprise, it’s hard to see corn doing much over the next month. After that, there is hope, however, which may be the best expectation for now.

Fertilizer Outlook – Dealers are ringing in the New Year with updated price sheets that show higher costs for most nutrients, reflecting the fall rally on the global fertilizer market.

Basis Outlook - Old Man Winter is throwing a few punches at the U.S. as 2018 begins, making it harder to move grain where it’s needed. That’s firming basis for growers needing to unwind hedges or raise cash with the start of a new tax year.

Financial Outlook - Futures aren’t the only markets looking to the future these days. Financial markets are also trading at levels reflecting what investors think will unfold in the months ahead.

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