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Grain Comments: 04-19-2023

Good morning:

Spec money is flowing out of the grain complex this morning with the trade continuing to weigh the Black Sea situation; it’s just another day there as Ukraine reports the resumption of exports from its ports while Russian officials accuse Ukraine of sabotaging the deal by bribing ship owners. The trade presumes that rapid U.S. corn and soybean planting can resume in a week, though extended weather forecasts aren’t exactly cooperating.

Rain and mixed precipitation are moving through the northern corn belt this morning, holding there for most of the day today before expanding throughout all but the far western Midwest tomorrow, lingering far east/southeast Friday/ Saturday. 6–10-day maps have moved back into the wet category today, with action more mixed to drier for the 11-15 day. Temperatures will hold safely below normal right up into the early days of May.

The speed of the US planting pace is already becoming a market topic. Corn planting across the US was reported at 8% as of Sunday night. While this is 2% above the average pace, it was below what trade was expecting. The rest of this week and into the month end, much of the Corn Belt is expected to be cool, but not necessarily wet. The question is how much seeding will take place and if the US can stay ahead of average. While a rapid planting pace is not necessarily needed for high yields, history does show that years with early corn planting do tend to see better corn production. An early growing season this year may be even more beneficial as weather models indicate a strengthening El Nino during the growing season and these do tend to bring drier conditions to parts of the Corn Belt. The USDA is currently estimating a trend corn yield of 181 bushels per acre, and it will take near perfect growing conditions to reach this. If corn plantings are delayed another month, it will be much more of a market factor. Trade is less concerned about the soybean planting pace which was at 4%.


Have a great day!

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