Category: Podcast

04 Jun 2021

AG MARKET UPDATE: MAY 28 – JUNE 4

Volatility continued this week as the market suffered small loses week over week. Corn planting was seen at being 95% planted this week with the first crop condition rating of the year at 76% g/e. Early yield estimates from Barchart.com have national US corn yield at 173.2 BPA for a total yield of 14.4 billion bushels. This implies 90.5 million acres planted with a 92% harvest rate. These numbers would lead to shrinking US ending stocks for 21/22 – NOTE these are just estimates and it is very early in the process.

This weeks volatility was a classic example of a news driven market. One day weather was the main price mover and another outside forces such as metals and the USD pulled markets down across the board. Old crop corn export sales this week were strong coming in at 531.1 tmt and new crop sales were 439.5 tmt. Both of which are solid numbers where old crop sales were better than expected while new crop were within expectation.

Via Barchart

Contrary to Corn, Soybeans made gains on the week. Planting was seen as being 84% completed at the onset with no crop conditions being reported just yet. World veg oil prices rallied during the week pulling beans up with it while corn struggled. With US exports to China lagging in recent weeks, the bullish stance on beans continues to be robust.  Should buying resume, any and all purchases will help the export numbers and further be supportive for the market. This week’s exports were within expectations for both old crop and new crop with new crop leading the way with 180.3 tmt.

Via Barchart

Crude oil continued its gains of recent weeks reaching the highest price in 2 ½ years. The demand for gas continues to grow as lockdowns ease and summer travel, both by cars and air, begins to ramp up. OPEC announced they will up production again in July.  While a bearish on the surface it would seem additional increases will be needed to slow this bull.  Optimism about Europe’s reopening along with the continuation of good news in the US on covid vaccines and reopening of states has been the main driver. US crude oil inventories were also lower this week than the 5 year seasonal average showing the demand is there.

Via Barchart

Dow Jones

The Dow gained on the week as it strung together several days of small gains with only small pullbacks. The craziness of the reddit trade returned this week with $AMC, $GME and $BB having wild bouts of volatility. Other indexes finished lower for the week as Nasdaq struggled on Thursday.

JBS

JBS was the victim of a recent cyber attack that caused them to have to shut down many plants. All were up and running by the end of the week but between this and the Colonial hack we may begin seeing more of these targeted attacks effect US consumers.

Lumber

Check out our recent post about the lumber market and what all has been going on. Lumber has leveled off here recently but it is still well ahead of where it was before the run up.

Podcast

Check out our recent podcast with Dr. Greg Willoughby: We’re talking with Greg in the new episode about being a “plant doctor”, weather patterns, GMO & organic produce, crop history, technical advances, level 201 education on agronomy, the agronomy equation, Helena Agri, soil biology, American v European agriculture, Greg’s early background in livestock, and the advancement of native plants to modern produce.

https://rcmagservices.com/the-hedged-edge/

US Drought Monitor

The map below shows this week’s drought conditions across the US. Parts of southern Kansas and northwest Oklahoma got relief this week while parts of North and South Dakota may receive much needed rain in the next week.

PRICES

Via Barchart.com

 

28 May 2021

AG MARKET UPDATE: MAY 22-28

Volatility was the story this week as you can see the dip and bounce back over the last few days in the chart below. Surprisingly it was not the funds alone that triggered the selloff but rather a more balanced mix of funds, commercials, and farmer selling – in short – it appears to have been a bit of profit taking into the end of the month.

Corn had strong exports this week with no major cancellations (despite rumors to start the week).  While these rumors of a cancellation dropped prices aggressively, the subsequent large sales of new crop corn to China, following the dip, ended up saving China quite a bit of money while also rebounding our markets. Seller beware when China is the main buyer.

The weekly ethanol grind was 294MGa and well above the weekly pace needed to meet the annual USDA estimate. Corn was seen as being 91% planted to start the week along with great weather across most of the US heading into Memorial Day weekend.

Via Barchart


Soybeans made small gains on the week with lower volatility than corn but similar price movement. Exports were solid in old crop beans giving the bulls some momentum to work with heading  into the weekend. Exports were strong again this week, which is a welcome sign after slowing the last couple. The soybean crop was seen as about 80% planted at the start of the week as progress continues across the country. The recent loses have made US commodities competitive again in the world market allowing for some stronger demand into the end of the year. Once we get on the other side of Memorial Day the June weather outlook will start to be important as most of the crop will be in the ground and some already well into growing.

Via Barchart

Dow Jones

The Dow and other indexes gained on the week with improving opening conditions and support for some of the major market players in the S&P. Republicans and Democrats continue to work on their versions of the infrastructure plan the Biden White House wants to pass.

Lumber

Check out our recent post about the lumber market and what all has been going on.

Podcast

Check out our recent podcast with Dr. Greg Willoughby: We’re talking with Greg in the new episode about being a “plant doctor”, weather patterns, GMO & organic produce, crop history, technical advances, level 201 education on agronomy, the agronomy equation, Helena Agri, soil biology, American v European agriculture, Greg’s early background in livestock, and the advancement of native plants to modern produce.

https://rcmagservices.com/the-hedged-edge/

US Drought Monitor

The map below shows this week’s drought conditions across the US. Many areas across the corn belt received rain over the week while others, like the Dakotas and Michigan, remain dry.

Via Barchart

07 May 2021

AG MARKET UPDATE: MAY 1-7


Corn continued it’s hot run this month with a great week in both old crop and new crop prices. As Brazil’s safrinha crop keeps facing a dry outlook, pressure is mounting on the US to produce a great crop to fulfill world demand. The US forecast is turning wetter for many major growing areas but remains cool for this time of year. The cool weather is not ideal for early growth, but the rain will be welcome in areas facing drought conditions (see map at bottom). There is a rumor of more Chinese interest in new crop which helped propel old crop to end the week. Despite poor exports this week, this news, along with South America’s troubles, have been the market moving news this week. The US corn crop is seen at 44% planted at the start of the week beginning May 3.

Via Barchart

 


Soybeans followed Corn this week as they also saw strong gains. China’s ASF news has slowed as of late which is good for export expectations to China. The world demand has continued to be strong and helpful to prices in both South America and the US, while US beans remain competitive in the world market even at these levels. The recent wet and colder weather across much of the US is not expected to cause any issues for the soybean crop except maybe pushing planting back in some areas where farmers also must wait to plant corn. 25% of the US soybean crop is seen as being planted for the week beginning May 3.

Via Barchart

 


The big question right now: What is going on with cotton? Cotton has not enjoyed in the rally in 2021 that other commodities have. The demand has been there, but there are already worries about the 2021 cotton crop. Normally these are a recipe for higher prices, right? The fundamentals would agree as higher comparative prices for other commodities may take away some cotton acres by the end of planting season. The technical side has been cotton’s enemy as of late as they have not been able to make new contract highs, unlike the grains. The world shipping bottleneck does not appear to be getting any better and as the US continues to come out of lockdowns along with other countries demand will only make it worse. This problem needs to be solved sooner rather than later.

Via Barchart

 


Dow Jones
The Dow was up this week while other indexes were mixed with the Nasdaq and Russel falling. As earnings continue to be reported many of the winners of the last year have posted strong quarters but it appears the momentum behind them have slowed as good earnings have sometimes been followed by selling.

Lumber
Check out our recent post about the lumber market and what all has been going on.

Podcast
Check out or recent podcasts with guests Elaine Kub and Kyle Little. Elaine and Jeff discuss grain markets and trading grains while Kyle helps give insight into the Lumber markets and what has been going on.

Listen with Kyle:

Listen now with Elaine

CME
CME Group announced this week that it will not re-open its trading pits that were closed last March at the start of the pandemic. The Eurodollar Options pit will remain open. See the full press release here.

US Drought Monitor
The map below shows the current drought conditions throughout the US as planting continues across the country.

 

Weekly Prices

Via Barchart.com

 

 

07 Apr 2021

Mastering the Grain Markets with the Grain Market Master Elaine Kub

If you’ve taken an ag econ class, been in the industry on the producer or investor side, or just have a general interest in the ag space, there’s a good chance that you’ve come across Mastering the Grain Markets by Elaine Kub. It’s the perfect intro to understanding ways that could help you make money trading grain, and we’re lucky to be joined by the author herself to talk about her books, designer contracts, crop opportunities, market outlook, what the next “game changers” in the ag business are going to be and more.

 

Listen to the entire episode on your preferred platform:

 

 

Follow Elaine on Twitter, and buy her book Mastering the Grain Markets here.

And last but not least, don’t forget to subscribe to The Hedged Edge on your preferred platform, and follow us on TwitterLinkedIn, and Facebook.

Disclaimer: This podcast is provided for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal, business, or tax advice. All opinions expressed by podcast participants are solely their own opinions and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of RCM Ag Services, their affiliates, or companies featured. Due to industry regulations, participants on this podcast are instructed not to make specific trade recommendations, nor reference past or potential profits. And listeners are reminded that managed futures, commodity trading, and other alternative investments are complex and carry a risk of substantial losses. As such, they are not suitable for all investors. For more information, visit www.rcmalternatives.com/disclaimer

 

05 Apr 2021

March 2021 Quarterly Stocks and Planting Intentions Report: The Hedged Edge

The USDA came out with a bullish report???!!!! It’s fair to say that many in the industry (us included) were left speechless. We know that 2020 was a crazy ride for commodities, but it looks like we may be in for an even WILDER ride on the opposite end for 2021. To discuss this bullish report, we’re joined by our two favorite RCM Ag Services Cotton and Grain experts, Jody Lawrence and Ron Lawson, to discuss how this recent report is bound to affect the markets/insurance premiums/loan opportunities and much more in the coming months.

Find the full episode links for The Derivative below:

 

And last but not least, don’t forget to subscribe to The Hedged Edge on your preferred platform, and follow us on TwitterLinkedIn, and Facebook.

Disclaimer: This podcast is provided for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal, business, or tax advice. All opinions expressed by podcast participants are solely their own opinions and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of RCM Alternatives, their affiliates, or companies featured. Due to industry regulations, participants on this podcast are instructed not to make specific trade recommendations, nor reference past or potential profits. And listeners are reminded that managed futures, commodity trading, and other alternative investments are complex and carry a risk of substantial losses. As such, they are not suitable for all investors. For more information, visit www.rcmalternatives.com/disclaimer

22 Feb 2021

2021 Ag Markets Outlook

2020 was a notably difficult year for commodities – oil went negative, coronavirus halted trade and decreased demand, and overall turmoil in the markets sent investors fleeing. Though the first quarter was rough, commodities did their best to rally in the last three quarters of the year and did so as well as they could. So, what of 2021? Are we going to see major rallies in the grain markets with dry weather and Chinese consumption? What about the cotton markets? Are we looking for a steady year or will cotton continue to trend down?

Because there’s so much to talk about, we’ve broken this episode down into two parts:

Part I: Cotton & Grains
In the first part, we’re joined by our Cotton expert – Ron Lawson, and our Grains expert – Jody Lawrence to talk about the outlook for these markets into 2021.

Part I Links:

 

Part II: Meats
In part II, we’re talking meats with our in-house meat specialists Tom Chaves and Kevin Bost.

Part II Links:

21 Jan 2021

HARVEST MARKET UPDATES: JANUARY 16-22

Corn was pretty flat on the week dropping only 1 cent in the March contract. As the weather in South America had no surprises and exports continued at a good pace there was not much to move the market overall despite a couple volatile days mixed in there. The underlying fundamentals did not change and the swings were brought on moslty from the managed money side. There was some rain over last week and some added to Argentina looking out a couple weeks but as we know weather that far out is hard to predict. IHS Markit updated their projected acres for 2021 to 94.2 million which is 3.4 million above the 2020 acreage. This would definitely be bearish new crop corn (Dec ’21) prices but there is a long way to go to be able to actually plant that many acres. After corn’s run up it is hard to tell if this week was a needed pause to asses where we are or a top. If you have not thought about marketing your ’21 crop yet we highly suggest coming up with a plan now as this run up in prices may not last forever and you do not want to miss out on profitable selling opportunities (see where we were this time in 2020 vs where we were May-Aug). The pullback may continue as funds begin offloading contracts but exports this week were strong so the fundamentals remain supportive.


Via Barchart

 

Soybeans took it on the chin this week for their first sizeable pullback since early December. The underlying fundamentals, like corn, have not changed in the last week. Most of the pullback came from follow through selling by speculative funds. The loses were greater this week before bouncing back as the intraday low on Wednesday was $13.52. IHS Markit projected US soybean acreage for 2021 to be 90.1 million which would be 7 million more than 2020. This is a bearish number if it is realized but is also not surprising when bean prices right now make them very attractive. Brazil’s crop keeps shrinking but they also planted the most acres ever this year, so they are still on track for a near record crop. Everyone will keep a close eye on South American production as the influence on our prices continues. If you still have beans and have not sold during the rally thinking they are going higher we suggest selling the physical and consider a re-ownership on paper strategy if you want to be long. Prices kept falling on Friday as funds continue to liquidate despite strong exports. When funds are as long as they have been we expected them to take profit at some point but it will need to slow down for the bullish fundamental news to direct the market again.


Via Barchart

 

Cotton had a solid boost this week as the bullish trend keeps on rolling. A weak dollar, as mentioned before, has been very supportive of commodities in general but especially cotton. As demand around the world ramps back up cotton has benefited from international demand, from countries like China, as they are coming out of the pandemic. With this world demand there are shipping concerns as Covid continues to be a problem in the US as ports struggle to contain breakouts. Ultimately when there are bottlenecks in the supply chain it frustrates everyone but will pinch balance sheets for end users when they pay more to get the cotton delivered.


Via Barchart

 

Dow Jones
The Dow gained on the week with Joe Biden’s inauguration coming and going without incident. As investors start to get a better idea of what the Biden administration will look like and what they look to do with regulation and taxes the next month will be important for investors. Most analysts are bullish looking at 2021 as vaccine distribution continues to roll out and we begin to look at the world after lockdowns from Covid are no longer needed. One thing that Biden has made apparent is he wants to switch towards cleaner energy throughout the country and already halted the Keystone Pipeline construction on day 1.

USDA Report

The RCM Ag team had a roundtable discussion following last week’s USDA report on our new podcast, The Hedged Edge. Here are the links to view/listen to it on your platform of choice.

 

Weekly Prices

Via Barchart

21 Jan 2021

Ag Markets Update: January USDA Report

In this monthly segment on The Hedged Edge, RCM Ag Services pros Jody Lawrence, Ron Lawson, Kevin Bost, and host Jeff Eizenberg come together to provide expert knowledge on important markets including cotton, meat, and grains following the USDA Report. Watch the whole episode below!

 

If you’d rather listen – click on the links below to find your preferred platform:

23 Dec 2020

Acing Agriculture with Dr. Scott Irwin

For the commodity world, 2020 has been particularly interesting. Between stimulus packages and China buying pullback, to ramping up production and setting up for a potential big comeback in 2021 it feels like we’ve been living through a game of ping pong. So to review it all – plus give some insight into 2021 – we’ve brought Dr. Scott Irwin on to go through it all. Dr. Scott Irwin is chair of the Agricultural Marketing in the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Economics at University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana. Scott is a national and international leader in the field of agricultural economics. His research on agricultural markets is widely-cited by other academic researchers and is in high demand among market participants, policymakers, and the media. In today’s episode, we’re talking about 2021 and beyond, game changers in the ag market, Chinese demand, the USDA report, University of Illinois program, and FarmDoc.

 

 

Follow along with Scott on Twitter and LinkedIn and check out FarmDoc.

And last but not least, don’t forget to subscribe to The Hedged Edge on your preferred platform, and follow us on TwitterLinkedIn, and Facebook.

Disclaimer: This podcast is provided for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal, business, or tax advice. All opinions expressed by podcast participants are solely their own opinions and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of RCM Alternatives, their affiliates, or companies featured. Due to industry regulations, participants on this podcast are instructed not to make specific trade recommendations, nor reference past or potential profits. And listeners are reminded that managed futures, commodity trading, and other alternative investments are complex and carry a risk of substantial losses. As such, they are not suitable for all investors. For more information, visit www.rcmalternatives.com/disclaimer

17 Dec 2020

Ag Market Updates: December USDA/WASDE Report

In this monthly segment on The Hedged Edge, RCM Ag Services pros Jody Lawrence, Ron Lawson, Kevin Bost, and host Jeff Eizenberg come together to provide expert knowledge on important markets including cotton, meat, and grains following the USDA Report.

During today’s episode we’re talking about reporting back from farmers on the recent USDA report, labor shortfalls,  taxes and tariffs, commodity price inflation, adjusting planting intentions, feed prices affecting hog/cattle prices, calorie reports, corn vs beans,  and more from the report and looking towards the end of 2020.

 

 

Find the full episode links below: