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Grains, oilseeds end bullish week mostly higher

Soybeans were modestly higher on commercial and technical buying, a relatively quiet end to a very bullish week. It was an up and down day with an early correction, but nothing has changed fundamentally as the supply remains tight and demand for beans and vegetable oils is strong. There were corrections in some of the global vegetable oil markets ahead of the U.S. session, but that was largely shrugged off. China bought 132,000 tons of new crop U.S. beans, only Beijing’s second announced purchase of that commodity since late January. Brazil’s soybean harvest continues to draw to a close, with probable record production, but also with high FOB prices because of demand. The Rosario Grain Exchange projects Argentina’s current soybean crop at 45 million tons, unchanged from the last guess. The USDA’s next set of projections is out May 12th in the monthly supply and demand report. Soybean meal was up modestly on commercial buying, while oil was mixed, consolidating, but hanging around the recent highs and mostly ignoring profit taking in the global veg oil market.

Corn was mostly modestly lower on spread adjustments, still posting solid week to week gains. Corn is also looking at a tight near-term supply and solid overall demand, along with the U.S. planting pace. Another bullish factor is probable yield loss for Brazil’s second crop because of dry weather. Unknown destinations and Guatemala both bought new crop U.S. corn, 336,000 and 136,680 tons, respectively. That sale to unknown might be confirmation of recent rumors about new demand from China, but that won’t be known until it’s time for delivery. The current marketing year for corn runs through the end of August. The USDA’s attaché in Argentina estimates 2020/21 corn production at 47 million tons, rising to 50 million in 2021/22, assuming a return to normal weather conditions. Exports are seen at 33.5 million tons this marketing year and 35 million next marketing year. The Rosario Grain Exchange has the current crop at 50 million tons, citing better than expected yields in some areas. 17% of Argentina’s current corn crop has been harvested. Buenos Aires is reportedly considering a grain export tax increase. Ethanol futures were unchanged. DTN says one South Korean feed mill bought 137,000 tons of optional origin corn and another picked up 133,000 tons of optional origin.

The wheat complex was mixed, mostly higher, ending the week sharply higher. Chicago was steady to firm, assessing possible freeze damage, while Kansas City and Minneapolis were up, watching weather in the U.S. Plains. Some freeze damage is possible in soft and hard red winter growing areas, and large swaths of the Plains are expected to see more dry weather. In the northern and northwestern U.S. Plains in to Canada, that will likely limit spring wheat planting. Statistics Canada’s planting intentions report is out next week, with most analysts expecting a year to year decrease in area. There are also crop condition concerns in parts of Europe. That said – France AgriMer has reported only a slight dip in that nation’s soft red winter condition rating, still holding well above a year ago. Ikar cut its outlook for Russia’s wheat crop by 1.5 million tons to 79.5 million. The USDA’s attaché in Argentina sees 2021/22 wheat production at 20.5 million tons, compared to 17.4 million for 2020/21, with exports at 13.9 million in the upcoming marketing year, compared to 11 million for the current marketing year.

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