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Corn down, watching rain totals

Soybeans were mixed on bull spreading. Beans are watching the weather, with some rain in the near-term forecast against a less certain medium-term outlook. Export demand for U.S. beans remains slow, with Brazil continuing to hold much of the market. The USDA’s weekly sales numbers are out Thursday morning. Chinese customs data has January through April soybean imports at 42.3 million tons, up 11.1% from last year. ANEC sees Brazil’s soybean exports for June at 13.1 million tons, which would be more than 3 million above a year ago. Soybean meal was mixed on bull spreading and bean oil was lower on questions about global vegetable oil demand. The USDA’s next supply and demand update is out Friday at Noon Eastern/11 Central.

Corn was lower on fund and technical selling. The trade is waiting to see rain totals for midweek and the updated forecasts for this weekend. There’s some variance in longer term outlooks, but a couple of the midday updates did show the potential for more precipitation in some areas. Increasing drought conditions in parts of the Midwest are causing some early stress to what’s still expected to be a record crop. The U.S. Energy Information Administration says ethanol production last week average 1.036 million barrels a day, up 32,000 on the week, but down 3,000 on the year, with stocks of 22.948 million barrels, an increase of 616,000 from the previous week, but a decrease of 668,000 from last year. The Renewable Fuels Association says April ethanol and DDGS exports were down from March. For ethanol, Canada, the European Union, and India topped the list for ethanol, while Mexico, South Korea, and Indonesia led the way for DDGS. Corn is also watching harvest numbers for Brazil’s second crop, with CONAB’s updated outlook scheduled for the 13th.

Wheat was lower on fund and technical selling, along with the higher dollar during the session. The complex is pressured by slow demand with Russia holding a big price advantage over most exporters. Dry weather is a concern in spring wheat areas of the northern U.S. Plains, but an increased chance of rainfall for the region did put some additional pressure on Minneapolis. Still, that rain will have to come to fruition. A big question for spring wheat is how many acres were actually planted after the early delays. The USDA’s 2023 planted area totals are out on the 30th, along with quarterly grain stocks. Dry weather is also an issue in parts of Russia and recent flooding in China and a dam failure in Ukraine are expected to cause some damage.

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