Weekly Market Commentary March 1, 2019


Friday afternoon, March corn closed up 2 cents at $3.64, but that was down 11 1/4 from last Friday.  December corn was up 2 1/4 at $3.94 1/4, down 7 1/2 for the week.

For soybeans, March closed up 1 3/4 at $8.99 1/2, down 11 from last Friday. November beans closed up 2 today at $9.45 3/4, but down 8 3/4 for the week.


The week started out on a positive note, with both corn and beans trading in the green. This, after weekend comments about delaying the March 1 implementation of further tariffs on China. However, wheat futures really fell apart, and that pulled corn and beans lower. Wheat lost 30 or more cents this week.  it also feels like this on again, off again with China is wearing on traders, with little enthusiasm for more stories about the potential for more sales.


Here are some of the BULL / BEAR factors we’re watching:


For corn:


  • Winter weather woes continue, leading to logistical issues on almost every mode of transportation. To some degree, this is supporting nearby basis.
    • Not only increased feed demand during colder conditions, but potentially feeding animals longer than anticipated
  • Weekly EIA report showed ethanol production last week was up 32,000 barrels per day from the week prior, with stocks decreasing by 204,000 barrels


  • Export sales report came in slightly above trade estimates, BUT total sales lagged last year by over 20%
  • One analyst raised their forecast for Brazil’s 2nd corn crop forecast by 0.9MMT to 65.8MMT


FOR Soybeans:


  • Crush continues to be high
  • Export commitments for ‘18/19 have improved to ONLY 17.5% BELOW last year as of this time, which is an improvement to earlier information
  • Potential for some lower soybean ending stocks in our USDA S&D table, as producers talk about switching bean acres to corn


  • Trade seems to be running out of enthusiasm on the US/China front – the market is not reacting as strongly to “potential” deals (maybe a little bit of crying wolf?)
  • If/when a trade agreement is reached – what will the SA crop/harvest schedule look like? Our window for export opportunity this year continues to narrow



March 7th we will be hosting 2 separate meetings with Iowa State Extension to discuss the Farm Bill, Crop Insurance and Grain Markets.

Ames: 8:00 A.M. at the Oakwood Church/City Church of Ames – 2400 Oakwood Rd

Carroll: 1:30 P.M. at Carrollton Hotel and Event Centre – 1730 HWY 71N

RSVP online at: www.surveymonkey.com/r/FarmBillMeetingMarch7th