Grain Spreads: Bean Uncertainty

Sean LuskGeneral Commentary


Corn and Beans remain rangebound. Perhaps that will be the case into the November crop report. The last two monthly reports showed a small crop getting smaller highlighted by October’s sub 50.0 BPA yield in soybeans. That said the reaction in prices has been modest best. Market refrained from moving over 14.15 in spot beans but reluctant to take out the lows near 1350. Today the January 23 soybeans closed at 1393. Exactly a midpoint from their monthly high and low. There is indecision here clearly in my view. Bearish headwinds include a higher Dollar, weak equities, a monster bumper crop coming out of Brazil in the next few months. There are bullish headwinds as well. First, a potential downgrade of yield in the next report that could see ending stocks down well below 200 million bushels. Second, La Nina playing havoc with Argentinean production along with other South American production areas. Third, a pathway to get Ukrainian grain out of the Black Sea is not extended by the Russians, sending wheat and corn higher, with soybeans in tow. Beans finished the day with double digit gains. In my opinion it was due to better-than-expected exports and rising Chinese soybean demand, despite an uptick in harvest activity.  Soybean harvest rose from 63% to 80% done, up from 71% last year and the 67% 5-year average. Transportation issues on the Mississippi River have eastern facilities offering cash bids well below what is seen west of the Mississippi River. Jan beans close the day at 1393. For the remainder of the week, key support is at 13.60. Key resistance is at 14.23/14.26. 

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Sean Lusk

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