1/7/19: Mark's "Market Talk" Blog

Did they buy or not, New Year but no new deal, where did winter go?

With the partial government shutdown still in effect we are not getting any USDA reports including export sales. Private sources are saying the Chinese are buying beans for late winter shipment. Some of these reports are for large amounts but since no one is working in the USDA reporting office there hasn’t been any official confirmation. Beans traded higher all 4 days last week on this news plus some dry weather concerns in Brazil that may have some merit. The unknown is how aggressive will the funds get with the bean market while the shutdown lingers? They are still short the market a little but currently the money flow is headed toward other markets as there could be some apprehension about what the government will report once they go back to work. As of today there doesn’t appear to be a quick resolve on a spending bill in our near future. Both sides are holding tight and they may be willing to sacrifice the areas that are shut down to prove a point. Unfortunately this puts the farm community right in the middle of things just like the trade war. Corn worked a little higher all last week even though the ethanol industry continues to struggle. If it wasn’t for this snag corn could be 25 to 40 cents higher as other demand is strong. Basis levels stayed steady or narrowed this week as the processors have worked through the late harvested bushels and now they have to find a level that will open bin doors. Weird winter weather is playing a role here also as snow, ice, and mud have caused shipments delays lately, sometimes in the same week. Everyone is ready for a good dry freeze up.  

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