Traders Cautious As USDA WASDE Report Approaches

Good Morning from Allendale, Inc. with the early morning commentary for August 10, 2020.

Grain Markets were mixed while corn and soybean futures rose after hitting its lowest prices in five weeks.  Bargain buying and higher oil prices gave support while gains were limited by strong crop conditions.  Wheat futures slid for a 3rd consecutive session as large world supplies continued to weigh on the market.

Last week, September corn futures were down 8.25 cents, September soybeans were down 25.00 cents, September wheat down 35.25 cents, September soymeal was down $10.30 and September soyoil was up 1 point.

Average estimates for Wednesday’s USDA Supply and Demand report were compiled by Bloomberg. They see corn yields of 180.5 bpa, and soybean yields at 51.2 bpa. Total corn production is estimated at 15,177 million bushels, soybeans 4,260 million bushels, and all wheat at 1,833 million bushels.

Ending stocks for 2020/2021 are estimated at 2,824 million bushels for corn, 526 million for soybeans, and 948 million bushels of wheat. In the poll, world ending stocks were not expected to change much.

USDA Weekly Crop Progress Report will be released this afternoon at 3 p.m. CDT.  Trade is expecting corn crop conditions to decline 1% to 71% GTE (72% last week, 66% average).  Soybean crop conditions expected to decline 1% to 72% GTE (73% last week, 63% average).  Hard red spring wheat is expected to be 1% lower to 72% GTE (73% GTE last week).

CFTC Commitments of Traders report showed funds new net position short -172,820 corn contracts, long +44,219 soybean contracts, long +1,178 wheat contracts, long +38,179 live cattle contracts and long +13,571 lean hog contracts.

Private exporters reported export sales on Friday to the USDA of 456,000 metric tons of soybeans to China during this marketing year.  This is the largest daily soybean sale to China since June 11th.

28 farm groups asked the USDA to extend the deadline for farmers to apply for coronavirus assistance payments and try harder to reach more growers hurt by the pandemic.  The USDA paid out $6.8 billion in the program as of Aug. 3, with cattle, milk and corn producers the biggest recipients.  The program was expanded on July 9 to cover 40 additional specialty crops and increase eligibility for crops like apples, but the rate of applications among produce growers has not increased.

Lebanon’s government holds no strategic stockpile of grains and last week’s blast destroyed the privately held stocks at its only large grain silo, the economy minister, a U.N. official and a regional grain expert all confirmed.  With banks in crisis and one of the world’s largest public debt burdens, Economy Minister Raoul Nehme has said Lebanon had “very limited” resources to deal with the disaster, which is roughly estimated at up to $15 billion.

An emergency donor conference was held this weekend by video-link for blast-stricken Lebanon which raised pledges worth nearly $298 million for immediate humanitarian relief.  President Trump said the U.S. would send additional planes loaded with medical supplies, food and water and would give substantial aid to Lebanon, though he declined to give a dollar figure.  “We haven’t given a number, but it will be substantial. On a humanitarian basis, we have to do it,” Trump added.

Dressed beef values were higher with choice up 0.81 and select up 0.74.  The Feeder cattle index is 141.92.  Pork cut-out values were up 1.13.

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