Monday Afternoon Comments (7/22/19) Corn futures closed lower today. The near-term trend remains weak. Major support for the December contract rests at $4.20 ½ - $4.20. Fresh news is limited. Favorable weather hangs over the market as the heat that had been impacting the Cornbelt last week broke down as expected. Current conditions are deemed favorable for crop production and the market has thus removed the risk premium. However, traders will continue to keep an eye the forecasts for later in the month, as some models indicate a return of elevated temperatures. Over the next 5 – 7 days, a northwest flow is expected to dominate the region; bringing limited rains (with the exception of IA & MN) and average to below average temperatures. NASS will release their updated crop progress report after the close today. Market participants are expecting to see a slight improvement to the corn rating. A week ago, the U.S. corn crop was rated 58% good/excellent. Weekly U.S. corn export inspections were disappointing this morning at 17.3 mln. bu. Corn inspections are roughly 82% of the USDA’s 18/19 annual forecast, suggesting exports will struggle to meet the annual projection with only 6 weeks left in the current marketing year.
Soybean futures were weaker today. Recent bean action has been choppy and consolidative. On the downside, the 20-day moving average is support at $9.12 ¼. Beans have come under pressure on ample U.S. and world supplies. In addition, the lack of a U.S./China trade agreement combined with no confirmation substantiating the rumors late last week & over the weekend that Chinese companies are seeking new purchases of U.S. agricultural products hangs over the market. Weekly U.S. soybean export inspections did exceed trade expectations this morning, coming in at 20.6 mln. bu. However, inspections need to average 42.8 mln. bu./week to reach USDA’s annual export forecast. At this point, that total seems unlikely with only 6 weeks left in the current marketing year. NASS will be out with their updated crop progress numbers for the U.S. soybean crop this afternoon. Market participants are expecting a slight improvement to the soybean condition rating. A week ago, the U.S. bean crop was rated 54% good/excellent.