Friday afternoon, March 2020 corn futures closed unchanged at $3.76 ¾, down 4 ½ cents for the week. December 2020 corn closed down ¼ cent at $3.90 ¼, down about a penny for the week. January 2020 soybeans closed up over 5 cents today at $8.89 ½, up almost 13 cents for the week. November 2020 soybeans closed up 4 ½ cents at $9.37 ½, up 10 ½ cents from last Friday’s close.
U.S. corn harvest is estimated to be 89% complete as of Sunday, leaving an estimated 9 million acres left to go to wrap up harvest 2019. Last week’s ethanol production came in at 312 million gallons, slightly higher than last week and now above the 310 million per week needed to get to the USDA’s yearly projection. On the other side, last week’s corn exports came in at 16.9 million bushels, well below the expectations of 19.7 to 27.6 million. So far this year, we are off 58% from the same period last year.
Soybean exports came in at 56.9 million this week, within the expected range but down from last week’s huge 71.7 million bushel number. So far this year, we are 20% ahead of the same time last year. Soybean futures have experienced 4 days of higher closes, but we have a long way to go to get back to prices we saw in mid-October. Trade rumors are also circulating about a major soybean processing plant in Argentina facing major financial problems. Taking a deeper look at this, it could be because previous buyers of Argentinian soymeal such as Vietnam and Indonesia are now finding new supply options in U.S. processors displaced from the U.S./China trade disputes. As the December 15th deadline looms in the near future, there is still a lot of uncertainty on whether or not the U.S. and China can complete a Phase 1 deal before the next round of tariffs kick in.
USDA’s December WASDE report will be released Tuesday, December 10th at 11 AM. Be sure to talk with your local Grain Marketing Advisor ahead of time about putting offers in on what you have in the elevator, and continue to keep an eye on new crop 2020 prices. It’s never too early to start locking in some of your marketing.