Follow by Email

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 4/30/2014

AM Comments 04/30/14

Wednesday, April 30, 2014, 8:13 am
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

Good morning!
The corn and soybean markets were lower last night on little news.  The 6-10 day weather forecast is starting to show above normal temperatures for the Midwest (mainly the southern belt) which could help get the U.S. Midwest back on the path to planting.  The soybean market is feeling a little pressure thanks to fresh rumors of additional Brazilian beans heading to the U.S.  I have said this before – these imports are needed and should be expected, but the bears in the market will still use this as a reason to sell.
The outside markets are lower with Crude Oil lower at this time (DN 106 @ 100.22) along with a lower US Dollar (138.68 vs. Euro) and the US stock market is slightly lower (DN 9).
Opening Calls
Corn down 3 to 4 cents
Soybeans down 3 to 6 cents

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 4/29/2014

AM Comments 04/29/14

Tuesday, April 29, 2014, 8:27 am
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

Good morning!
The markets are slightly higher this morning, with corn firming once again on the cooler/wetter weather forecasts.  The weekly planting progress report that was released yesterday also helped support corn – the market was expecting 20-25% planted on corn and the USDA says c corn in 19% planted vs. 28% average.  IA, IN and OH are all 18 points behind their respective 5-year averages.  The average for next Monday’s report?  47%. 
Other than that, pretty quiet.  The soybean market seems to ebb and flow right along with Chinese crush margins (which are improving a bit as meal demand perks up).  If China is truly starting to turn their margins around, it could be tougher for the US to nab some of those Brazilian ships of beans that not long ago had nowhere to go. 
Opening Calls
Corn 3 to 4 cents higher
Soybeans steady to 2 cents higher

Monday, April 28, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 4/28/2014

AM Comments 04/28/14

Monday, April 28, 2014, 7:58 am
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

Good morning!
The soybean market found support last night and bounced sharply higher – pushing May & July futures prices back up above $15.  I almost don’t want to type this, but the rumor is that on the recent pull-back in soybean prices China started nosing around trying to buy additional Brazilian beans (the story last week was that they could cancel out of those purchases fast enough).  So who knows, overall though with a bean carryout that is this tight – we will see more than our fair share of volatility. 
The corn market is also a touch higher so far this morning – while the rain that fell over the weekend is beneficial to some, it is currently being viewed as a threat to planting progress.  The weekly planting progress report will be out later this afternoon with the market expecting us to be slightly behind “normal”.  The cool wet weather this week won’t help us catch up, and the extreme cold weather in some of the northern wheat country will not be much help to that crop’s condition ratings.
The outside markets are higher with Crude Oil higher at this time (UP 40 @ 101.00) along with a lower US Dollar (138.57 vs. Euro) and the US stock market is higher (UP 60).
Opening Calls
Corn 2 to 4 cents higher
Soybeans 10 to 15 cents higher

Friday, April 25, 2014

FC Morning Market Commentary 04.25.14

Good morning!

The corn and soybean markets were both higher last night – it appears that the weather forecasts have turned a little wetter which is expected to delay corn planting (hence higher prices).  Monday afternoon we will have another planting progress report which will likely show U.S. corn somewhere around 20% planted, which would be a little behind the average of 32% but nothing too concerning.  Well… with next week’s forecast now looking wetter, it will be hard to gain ground on planting progress that week.  This means the Monday after that could show us well behind the average which will start to approach 50%.

In other friendly news (friendly to prices) – tensions in the Black Sea are escalating once again, which is directly supporting wheat. 

It is a little too early to talk about (let’s get the crop in the ground first) but El Nino chances keep moving up and up (which bring cool, wet weather to the US Midwest).  The chart at the bottom of this email shows the probability for El Nino to show up this July/August/Sep – it looked only possible back in January but now it looks very likely.  If realized, this would likely push corn and soybean yield forecasts higher. (link)

Opening Calls
Corn 3 to 5 cents higher
Soybeans 7-10 cents higher (old crop), steady new crop

Have a great day!


Thursday, April 24, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary

Good morning!

The weekly export sales report was out this morning and it was pretty much as expected.  Corn sales were decent – right in the middle of the range of guesses.  Soybeans sales were near zero (but still a touch positive) which is actually right in the middle of the range of guesses.  New crop soybean sales were a little disappointing, which could cause new crop prices to lose a little ground to old crop today. Old crop soybean meal sales were big, which will offer support to beans.  Overall – not much to see here. 

Generally speaking corn and wheat are both trading weather, and they both view the weather forecasts as friendly.  Wheat is rallying thanks to dry weather in the plains while corn is rallying thanks to wet weather in the corn belt.  Long term, this moisture we have been getting will likely be viewed as bearish to corn prices (we need the rain) – but not until we know the crop is in the ground.

Opening Calls
Corn 1 to 3 cents higher
Soybeans 3 to 6 cents higher

Have a great day!
Dustin Weiner 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

FC Hosts Iowa Central Community College Students

On April 15, 2014, we hosted 15 students and their instructor from Iowa Central Community College at our Farnhamville location.   

Kathy Carlson and Tyler Farnham started the morning by showed them a brief presentation on FC and our history. They shared facts about the company, and tips on pursuing a career.  The ICCC group were then given a tour of the Farnhamville location.  The students were able to see the behind the scenes of the grain and agronomy departments and what makes a co-op function.  Along the tour they were also able to go inside the new fertilizer shed and see the technology that’s being utilized in today’s operations.  They wrapped up the tour with being given a new FC hat and all took a minute to pose for a class photo in front of their bus!

Thank you to ICCC for spending the morning with us, we enjoyed having you!

FC Morning Market Commentary 04.22.14

Good Morning! 

Overnight markets a little higher on thoughts that maybe yesterday’s down move was a bit overdone, although price rally potential may be capped by overall good spring weather for planting, and trade reports of additional Brazilian beans and Argentine sbmeal imports to the eastern half of the US. Today’s weather looks pretty good everywhere.  2 fronts to pass thru the Midwest this week, first one tomorrow then second over the weekend. Both carry pretty good chances of rain.  National corn planting progress was 6% yesterday, trade was expecting 10-12%.  Not concerning yet, as with good conditions nearly half the US corn crop can be sowed in  a week. Other news light this am, equities slightly higher and energies slightly lower.  Re-opening grain calls will be higher….corn up 3-4 and soybeans up 3-5.

Jon Setterdahl

Monday, April 21, 2014

FC Market Commentary Afternoon 4.21.14

Tough day in the markets to start the week.  Corn/beans/wheat all lower on generally good weather and the lack of escalation in Ukraine over the weekend.  Weekly export inspections out this am were huge on corn at 62.9 mln bu, slow on beans (as expected) at 5.1mln bu.  Weekly planting progress just out this afternoon shows corn 6% planted nationally.  Iowa was 2%.  Market was expecting a national number of 10-12%, so this may be a bit supportive to prices tonight.  Weather calls for good precip chances Wednesday and again over next weekend.

Jon Setterdahl
FC Coop
Ames, Iowa

FC Market Commentary 21 Apr 14

The markets started Easter Sunday higher last night – mainly in soybeans – but gave way to selling pressure and this morning we now see corn, beans and wheat all in the red.  The talk overnight was that risk premium was being taken out of the markets as the situation in Ukraine seems to have improved.  Leaders from the U.S., EU, Russia and Ukraine reached an agreement last week, at least making an attempt at a peaceful resolution.  This is allowing the grain markets to relax a bit. 

This afternoon, after our markets close, we will get the weekly planting progress report.  The market is expecting corn planting to be somewhere around 10% complete.  This is close to our average and will confirm the market sentiment that planting, so far, is “normal”.  Between good prospects for the 14/15 crop and Ukraine improving – corn has struggled to stay positive lately.  Last night May corn traded to the lowest level since the March stocks report…

The outside markets are mixed with Crude Oil lower at this time (DN 25 @ 103.12) along with a higher US Dollar (138.06 vs. Euro) and the US stock market is higher (UP 8).

Opening Calls
Corn down 4 to 5 cents
Soybeans down 7 to 10 cents

Have a great day!


Friday, April 18, 2014

Safety Tips for Planting Crops

Six tips to keep in mind in preparation for planting:
1. Transport Safely: Be mindful as you transport equipment on public roadways. It is recommended to provide the traveling public with many signs to warn them you’re moving more slowly than they are. Newer equipment features a wide variety of warning systems, such as flashing lights, extremity markings and slow-moving vehicle signs. It is also recommended to bringing older equipment up to date to meet modern standards.
2. Follow the Label: When applying products like herbicide, pesticide, or fungicide, it is important to read the label thoroughly. Do not overlook precautionary statements, such as those urging you to wear long sleeves or protect your eyes. Keep a book of product labels handy in case a chemical gets on your skin or in your lungs. Not keen on keeping a book? Just snap photos of the label on your phone.
3. Maintain Equipment: Keep every piece of equipment on your farm serviced. Even if you serviced a machine before putting it away last season, that does not mean it will be in perfect condition when you take it to the field this year.
4. Store Fuel Properly: Store fuel away from your machine shed. If problems arise and a fire erupts, keeping your fuel tank a safe distance away from buildings will offer the best protection.
5. Stay Healthy: Spending long hours in the field does not mean you should skip meals or rest. Without an adequate amount of sleep and proper nutrition, you will be operating at a reduced level in the fields. Follow the recommended guidelines for sleep and diet. To stay well rested, the Centers for Diease Control and Prevention suggest between seven and nine hours of sleep per night for adults. To make sure you’re eating right, use the U.S. Department of Agriculture MyPlate guide.
6.  Watch for Children: Large pieces of equipment that make a lot of noise will attract a child’s attention. Avoid carrying your children on your farm equipment.

FC Educates High School Students about Ag Careers

FC attended an event at Iowa Lakes Community College yesterday for local High School Students. 15 High Schools with nearly 700 sophomore and junior students attended the event where they selected three educational workshops to learn more about career opportunities. 

Holly Knobbe, FC’s Talent Manger, spoke to the students about Ag Sales and Service Careers. 

Shown to the left is one of two sections of students that learned about agriculture careers. 

Knobbe stated, “It is critical for students to understand that there are great career opportunities in Agriculture. We need the next generation to get excited about the careers available to them because by 2050 the population is expected to double, which is an increase by 2.5 billion people. This will be a great opportunity for this generation to overcome the challenges to feed the growing population.”

Thursday, April 17, 2014

FC Morning Market Comments

Good morning!

The markets ended up mixed overnight, with soybeans trading higher for most of the session only to fall back towards steady at the 7:45am pause while corn followed a similar – but less volatile arch. Soybeans once again made new contract highs last night, it will be interesting to see if they try to test those again during the day session today. 

The weekly export sales this report came out this morning and sales made last week were about as expected for both corn and beans.  There were once again extremely small but still net positive old crop export soybean sales made last week.  AKA – no cancellations.  This should support old crop beans once again.

The 6-10 day forecasts (at the bottom of this email) show above normal temps and precip for next week for most of the Midwest.  Sounds like rain this weekend followed by warmer temps – which isn’t all bad.  This forecast is viewed by the trade as favorable for planting this spring (read: a little bearish to prices).  You will also see in the new drought monitor released this morning that parts of Iowa are seeing improvement – and with rain coming this weekend hopefully that will continue.

*** REMEMBER – NO MARKETS TOMORROW ***.  The CBOT is closed for the Good Friday / Easter holiday.  They will resume again Monday morning. 

Have a great day and weekend!


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

FC Morning Comments

Good morning!

The soybean markets continues to impress with another rally overnight – making new contract highs (old crop).  The big bullish story yesterday (which appeared to carry-through into the night session) was the NOPA crush report which showed a surprisingly large amount of beans crushed last month.  12 million bushels more than we crushed in Feb and 16mb more than we crushedlast March.  The market is trying to ration demand and this report shows demand may actually be increasing – hence the higher prices.

The issues in Russia/Ukraine have not gone away, in fact they may be escalating.  Of course no one really knows what will come of this but tomorrow officials from U.S./EU/Russia/Ukraine are meeting in Geneva, Switzerland to discuss possible resolutions. 

The weather for the US corn belt is showing a rise in temperatures with normal to above normal precip in the 6-10 day forecasts (maps below).  This should help get corn planting rocking and rolling in many areas.  Some private analysts are predicting (based on the weather forecasts) that the US will be 40% done with corn planting by the end of April which would be a great start!

Corn prices seem to be stuck – soybean and wheat prices have been firm, corn demand has been strong, Ukraine is still having issues – all of this should be friendly to corn prices.  However, improved planting weather and the ability of the US farmer to plant corn faster than he ever has before has the market cautious about getting caught long. 

The outside markets are higher this morning with Crude Oil higher at this time (UP 103 @ 104.78) along with a higher US Dollar (138.37 vs. Euro) and the US stock market is higher (UP 72).

Opening calls
Corn steady to down 1c
Soybeans 8 to 15 cents higher (led by old crop)

Have a great day!


6 to 10 Day Outlook - Temperature Probability

6 to 10 Day Outlook - Precipitation Probability

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 4/15/2014

AM Comments 04/15/14

Tuesday, April 15, 2014, 7:58 am
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

Good morning!

Most of the news we are reading this morning is the same type of news you can get from your local news station: it is all about Ukraine/Russia.  Tensions are escalating, Ukraine has now deployed their military for anti-terrorism operations as pro-Russian militants take over police stations in Eastern Ukraine.  Russia is of course playing the same card they did with the Crimean Peninsula – accusing Ukraine of not protecting Russian-speaking people.  If you want to tie this into grain S&D’s, the Ukraine National Bank nearly doubled their benchmark lending rate, changing it to 14.5% from 7.5%.  This is an attempt to slow inflation but their farmers are now facing a credit crunch as they try to finance their 2014 spring planting season.  Corn production estimates for the Black Sea area are already being lowered. 

The outside markets are mixed with Crude Oil lower at this time (DN 95 @ 103.10) along with a higher US Dollar (138.03 vs. Euro) and the US stock market is higher (UP 27).

Other than that, pretty quiet.  The market is unsure as of now the condition of the HRWW crop after last night’s cold temps. If you see a rally in corn/wheat later today – news regarding those freezing temps could be why…

Opening Calls
Corn down 2 to 3 cents
Soybeans steady to 5c higher

Monday, April 14, 2014

FC Morning Market Comments 04.14.14

Good morning!

The markets rebounded overnight, bouncing up from Friday’s lower close.  The wheat market seems to be leading the charge higher (up double digits) likely due to ongoing weather concerns in US wheat country along with escalating tensions in Russia/Ukraine.  Winter wheat crop conditions were already poor (at a 12-yr low) thanks to the drought in the Southern Plains – and now with freezing temps in the forecast for tomorrow morning it looks like they could get worse.

Although some of us here in Iowa will feel that the rains over the weekend were beneficial – the market is trading this cool wet weather as something that is friendly to prices as corn planting will have to wait a little while longer.  Speaking of planting, the USDA’s first planting progress report will be out this afternoon and the market is expecting the US to be just under 5% planted on corn.  This number would be pretty close to normal, and it’s probably too early to get worked up over planting delays…

Opening Calls
Corn 2 to 4 cents higher
Soybeans steady to 5c higher

Have a great day!


Friday, April 11, 2014

Should you plant corn today?

Farmer Cooperative Company's Todd Claussen explains some issues to be aware of if planting corn today (April 11, 2014) in Iowa.

FC Market Commentary for April 11, 2014

Good morning!

The news wire is extremely quiet this morning as new fundamental news is hard to come by.  As mentioned yesterday, the stories regarding China defaulting on soybean purchases are still out there and are likely the reason that soybean prices suddenly feel so heavy. 

The weather looks great out there… for the next day and a half or so.  After that a cooler and wetter forecast will take hold.  The moisture of course will be welcomed with open arms.  I also stuck a chart on the bottom of these comments reflecting increased chances of an El Nino this summer. Generally speaking, an El Nino would be good for the crops here in the U.S. Midwest (cooler, wetter summers) – it just needs to get here in time.

Opening Calls
Corn steady to down 2 cents
Soybeans down 6 to 9 cents

Have a great day!


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

FC Market Commentary for April 8, 2014

Good morning!

The overnight electronic trading session was a quiet one last night with both corn and beans hovering close to their closes yesterday.  Yesterday afternoon was the first weekly planting progress report (of course, only for states like Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas, etc. etc. are reporting this early).  The weekly crop conditions report was delayed a day and will be out this afternoon.

Tomorrow of course is the April S&D, as I mentioned yesterday the trade seems to agree that the carryouts (aka projected ending stocks) in both corn and soybeans will shrink a bit when compared to the March report – but there are still questions as to how we will get to those numbers, especially in soybeans.    Exports.  Imports.  Domestic crush.  Residual usage.  All of those categories will likely be tweaked just enough to spit out a carryout somewhere between 135mb and 145mb.  The current average trade guess on soybean carryout is 139mb (it was 145mb last month).  The current average trade guess on corn carryout is 1.403bb (it was 1.456bb last month).

The outside markets are mixed with Crude Oil higher at this time (UP 86 @ 101.30) along with a lower US Dollar (137.92 vs. Euro) and the US stock market is slightly lower (DN 7).

Opening Calls
Corn down 2 cents
Soybeans mixed, down 1c to up 1c

Have a great day!


Friday, April 4, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 4/4/2014

A.M. Comments 4/4/2014

Friday, April 4, 2014, 8:23 am
Submitted by: Joel Pudenz

Good Morning!

The U.S. jobs report was out this morning and it looks to be neutral. During the month of March, the U.S. added 192,000 non-farm jobs – just short of the 200,000 expectation. This leaves the reported unemployment rate at 6.7% vs. expected 6.6%. Markets are mixed this morning as the trade focuses on the monthly WASDE report due next Wednesday. Most feel ending stocks for corn and beans will dwindle from the March report (1.456 bln bu. corn, 145 mln bu. beans).

More moisture is in the forecast for the wheat belt, adding pressure to wheat futures and that may spillover into corn. Midwest forecasts look to be steady to below normal temperatures and steady to above precipitation. NOAA continues to call for a building El Nino, which means below normal tempuratures for the Central U.S. The question remains if/when the effects will take place (Early summer? Late summer?).

Opening Calls:
Corn 1 to 3 cents lower CBOT
Beans 1 oto 3 cents higher CBOT

Here’s a look at where snowplows are at in Iowa. Drive safely!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 4/2/2014

AM Comments 04/02/14

Wednesday, April 2, 2014, 8:16 am
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

Good morning!

May soybean futures made new highs last night, falling just shy of $15.00 on the board.  Corn and wheat prices didn’t fare as well with corn down around a nickel and wheat down around a dime.  The soy complex rallied yesterday and last night on news that the Senate is trying to bring back the $1/gallon biodiesel tax credit.  The House is of course on the other side of it – their bill aims to keep the credit as-is (expired). 

Basis values were weaker at the U.S. gulf yesterday in both corn and soybeans due in part to heavy farmer selling (thanks to the futures rally) and cheaper barge freight.  Also affecting bean basis is the continued talk of soybean imports from South America.  Imports into this US aren’t surprising, they are in fact needed.  The Eastern U.S. can and will import a good amount of soybeans (they did so last year), but if you look at the image to the right, you will see a loaded soybean vessel headed to NOLA of all places.  High prices cure high prices…
Outside markets are mixed with Crude Oil lower at this time (DN 52 @ 99.22) along with a lower US Dollar (137.82 vs. Euro) and the US stock market is higher (UP 19).  The much anticipated U.S. Jobs report will be released Friday. 

Opening Calls
Corn down 4 to 6 cents
Soybeans 2 to 4 cents higher

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

FC Morning Grain Market Commentary for 4/1/2014

AM Comments 04/01/14

Tuesday, April 1, 2014, 8:12 am
Submitted by: Dustin Weiner

Good morning!

The corn and soybean markets were firmer last night. It appears that soybeans were leading the charge thanks to the USDA report yesterday that confirmed tight US soybean stocks. The fund money is also still hanging in there as general buyers of commodities. 

China’s official PMI for March was released, the trade expected 50.1 and it came out at 50.3 (it was 50.2 in Feb).  Anything over 50 indicates growth in their economy and the higher above 50 it is – the faster the growth.  So, this number calms a few of the fears that have been showing up recently regarding China’s economy and should help support the market, especially the soy complex.  Also in friendly news out of China it appears their cash soybean crush margins were up a little overnight (they had been getting pounded lately).
Extended weather outlooks look favorable for planting in the southern Midwest and Delta as the 8-14 day outlook shows a warmer/drier pattern for those areas.  The northern half of the belt is still showing below normal temps…  They are of course planting corn down south, Texas corn plantings are estimated at 28% complete versus 53% last year and 28% normal. Arkansas is 18% planted versus 20% last year and 30% normal. Georgia is 34% planted versus 28% last week and 44% on average.

Opening Calls
Corn 2 to 4 cents higher
Soybeans 8 to 12 cents higher