In a quiet 2 1/4 cent range, corn is trading lower this morning as it continues to battle a lack of bullish news.
Yesterday, the USDA reported weekly corn export inspections at 876,000 mt (34.5 MB) for the week ending January 11. So far, total inspections have reached 548 mb, up 29% over last year, whereas the USDA is forecasting a 26% jump.
While US corn export prices have become more competitive with Brazil recently, prices from Argentina and Ukraine are cheaper.
South American crop watch Dr. Cordonnier, lowered his estimate of Brazilian corn production from 117 mmt to 115 mmt, while at the same time raising Argentina’s corn production estimate 3mmt to 56 mmt. His Brazilian corn estimate is well below the USDA’s 127 mmt estimate and just under Conab’s estimate of 117.6 mmt.
The head of estimates at the Rosario Grain Exchange commented that there is a good chance that Argentina’s corn harvest could top current estimates of 59 mmt with the regular shower activity the country has been seeing. The USDA is currently estimating Argentina’s crop at 55 mmt.
Soybeans are weaker this morning and trading near session lows, as weakness from lower soybean oil drags on prices.
Both soybean meal and oil are lower this morning as meal consolidates with minor losses from yesterday’s gains, while soybean oil continues its track lower showing 0.50 cent losses.
Yesterday’s NOPA crush report that showed 195.33 million bushels of soybeans crushed in December. This came in well above the average trade guess and set a new record. The crush was up 10% year over year and up 5% from the prior December high. Following the NOPA report, soybean oil retreated as soybean oil stocks were much higher than expected and pegged at 1.36 billion pounds, though stocks were down 24% from last year.
A Brazilian farm lobby has stated that current estimates of Brazil’s soybean production are too high given the tough growing conditions. The lobby estimates 23/24 production closer to 135 mmt. Whereas the current USDA estimate puts the crop at 157 mmt.
The wheat complex is mixed this morning as all three classes trade quietly in tight 4-5 cent ranges with Chicago and KC showing minor gains, while Minneapolis retreats.
There is currently talk of 2 Chinese vessels at US Gulf terminals set to load SRW wheat. Presumably these would be the first loadings of the wheat purchased back in early December.
Weekly wheat inspections reported by the USDA yesterday came in at 8.6 mb, bringing 23/24 total inspections to 381 mb, which is below the pace needed to meet the USDA’s projection and down 16% from last year. The USDA’s estimate for 23/24 exports remains at 725 mb.
With this recent cold snap, it is currently estimated that about 20% of the US winter wheat crop has been exposed to the extreme cold, and it is unknown how much has been damaged if any.
According to FranceAgriMer, estimates of France’s soft wheat exports for 23/24 have been reduced to 17.01 mmt, down from December’s estimate of 17.2 mmt, showing slower demand. This also raised the countries ending stocks to 3.43 mmt.
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