US grain futures start out trading week choppy and mixed; eyes on weather, USDA updates
The first full week of trading in July began with the US grain futures trading mixed Monday.
In late trading, corn was fractionally lower, soybeans were around 2 cents higher and wheat was 1 to 3 cents down.
All three markets were well off their daily highs and trading nearer their session lows.
The US midwest weather patterns have turned drier with more seasonal temperatures.
Forecasts for more generally dry weather in that region has raised some worries about yield risks for corn and soybeans, especially since those crops are already well behind in maturity due to historically very late plantings.
Warmer and drier
The long-range European weather models forecast August to be warmer and drier across much of the central US.
There are also some weather forecasters calling for the building of a high-pressure ridge over the Midwest starting next week.
That means higher temperatures and less rainfall.
High-pressure ridges are also called “heat domes.” These forecasts limited selling interest in the grain markets Monday.
The Monday afternoon weekly USDA crop progress reports are expected to show corn and soybean crop conditions just slightly improved in the week ended July 7.
Corn is expected to be rated in 57% “good” to “excellent” condition from 56% a week earlier.
For soybeans, USDA expects 56% of the crop rated “good” to “excellent” condition, which is slightly up from last week’s figure.
Traders are awaiting the latest supply and demand update from USDA on Thursday (July 11).
Traders expect the government to lower its US corn crop production to 13.664 billion bushels from its June forecast of 13.680 billion bushels.
A cut in US exports is expected to raise USDA’s US ending stocks to 1.7 billion bushels from 1.675 billion bushels in the June report.
USDA is likely reduce the size of this year’s US soybean crop to 3.83 billion bushels, down from 4.15 billion bushels estimated in June.
Soybean ending stocks are expected to fall to just above 800 million bushels, which is down from 1.045 billion estimated by USDA in June.
Grain traders expect USDA to slightly increase total US wheat production to 1.9 billion bushels from the June report.
Wheat ending stockpiles are expected to be revised slightly lower in Thursday’s report.
US corn inspected for export in Monday morning report totaled 703,192 metric tonnes (MT) in the week ended July 4, up from 284,923 a week earlier.
US soybeans inspected for exported last week totaled 757,903 MT, up from 720,842 MT a week earlier.
US wheat inspected for export in the latest week totaled 609,456 MT, down slightly from last week.