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Grain Comments: 02-24-2023

Good Morning

Inter and intra-commodity spreads are adjusting post-USDA Ag Forum tables; the potential in that corn S&D will loom large as old-crop prices ration off demand and new-crop production prospects look robust.

This afternoon’s USDA Cattle on Feed Report is expected to show all U.S. cattle on feed as of February 1 at 11.772 million head, or 96.5% of last year; January placements are seen at 97.1% of last year, while January marketings are estimated at 103.9% of last season.

Another widespread precipitation chance is on the way for the Plains and Midwest Sunday/Monday, with extended maps still wet; temp forecasts look to be slowly dropping as cold conditions move in from the NW into March.

Argentine rains will hold north going forward with most areas dry; BRZ again saw widespread rains over the past 24 hours with another wet ten days ahead.

While the release of the March WASDE data is over a week away, trade is already starting to make some estimates on what may be released, mainly for South American production. South American weather has been stressful all growing season for Southern Brazil and nearly all of Argentina. The most attention on this has been on Argentina where severe drought is thought to have reduced crop size. In the February WASDE report the USDA predicted Argentine crops of 47 million metric tons (mmt) for corn and 41 mmt for soybeans. Private analysts and field scouts believe the crops will be smaller though, especially on soybeans. Several of these groups have Argentine soybean production from 33 to 34 mmt. On corn the privates have production closer to 45 mmt. We have also seen private analysts trim Brazil’s soybean crop by 2 mmt, putting it at 151 mmt. Brazil’s corn production estimate is holding steady at 125 mmt. In the big picture we need to look at overall South American production though, and projections are for an increase in total crop size from last year. For today’s session all interest will be on US export sales to see if buyers are extending US coverage in case of smaller South American supplies, even if just short term.

Have a great day!

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