Wednesday's USDA monthly crop report came in line with the pre-report range of guesses but not right on the average estimate, creating some volatility on the day. Corn production was put at an estimate of 10.727 billion bushels down 52 million bushels from last month, but 307 m.b. higher than the average pre-report trade estimate. So it was bullish in the big picture but not as bullish as expected and how the trade was positioned, leading to corn pushing $.10-$.16 lower in the opening range. Ending stocks inventory came in at 733 m.b. versus 650 last month and pre-report estimates of 596. On the surface it was bearish for the day as we added 83 m.b. to our ending stocks but the big picture long term it's bullish as the numbers are historically tight and leaves no margin for error in the next planting and growing season and will have corn users demanding more acres to be planted this spring.
That will be hard to do as bean stocks are even tighter demanding more acres as well. When you add and subtract all the corn numbers, everything remains the same as there was no large change in the numbers that would suggest a price direction to price it in. We will use the report numbers as part of our long-term trading strategy but nearterm focus on demand and South American weather as the next pricing force. Thursdays weekly export sales report, a gauge of demand, showed 214,000 metric tons of corn was sold last week off from 129 the week prior, but well under the 800 to 1 million metric tones plus needed to be demand price bullish. China was in for zero the second consecutive week. Regular Asian business that accounts for about 70% of our exportable feed grains annually were active with Taiwan, South Korea and Japan all in buying but using teaspoons to buy and not ships with tonnage. All small sales. They could be waiting for a harvest break that may not come. Either way demand is a bearish indicator.
For beans, we saw the USDA production estimate come in at 2.634 billion bushels down 58 m.b. from last month and 25 m.b. under the average pre-report estimate. Ending stocks were left unchanged at 115 m.b. up 9 m.b. from the average estimate. Numbers on the month hardly changed we saw beans go from up 30 on the opening range to down 15 then back to up 45 cents. In part, the second rally came from old bulls that were part of the $.90 break from last weeks contract highs to this Tuesday's low, coming back in the market. Like corn, beans to see the report numbers as long term bullish but near-term neutral.
Thursdays weekly export sales report showed 628,000 metric tons of beans were sold last week versus 520 the week prior with China in for 340,000 metric tons of the total versus 453 the week prior. Not great sales but certainly very good sales with China showing no sign of backing away in a big way like they have done for corn. Bean demand remains a bullish source. What about the weather. On Brazil's weather, WXRISK.com the AG weather site sees the next 7 to 10 days with a massive heat dome over west central and eastern Brazil. The heat expands southerly by the weekend. There's been talk, some farmers will hold back planting of beans until some rain occurs.
Note, Brazil has a sandy soil that doesn't hold rain very well and crops need large rain events compared to the US farms that have the earthy soil that holds moisture. Brazil has been the world's number two bean producer exporter and is scheduled to pass the US as number one producer exporter this year. We know world stocks are low due to last year's crop season drought in Brazil and here in the US. So Brazil's new crop season is critical to pricing from plantings end in October to the beginning of harvest late February. Only threat in the US is potential for a deep frost September 23 and 24.
Our winter wheat crop states now planting our new winter wheat crop look to see more ample rainfall over the next three days with Texas and Oklahoma 2 to 4 inches. Planting after this rain will move quickly to take advantage of the topsoil moisture. We saw the grains rally into the monthly USDA crop report eight consecutive months and break after it eight consecutive months. This last September report was different with corn and beans down the week into the report release and now up for two days after. Complete reversal from trading patterns. The suggestion of the trading pattern, is there going to take us back to test contract highs and possibly new highs. How we startthe new week is important to the near term direction.
Technicals read like this. December corn has major support 7.55. A close under and 6.90 is next. Resistance is 8.00 then 825. November bean support 17.20 then 16.80 with resistance at 18.00. December wheat support is 8.55. A close under and 8.20 is next. Resistance Friday was 9.15. A close over and 9.35 is next. Then 9.45 and 9.60.
Trading foreign exchange, commodity futures, options and other over-the-counter products carries a high level of risk and may not be suitable for all investors. The high degree of leverage associated with such trading can result in substantial losses, as well as gains. The past performance of any trading strategy or methodology is not indicative of future results, which can vary due to market volatility; it should not be interpreted as a forecast of future performance. You should carefully consider whether such trading is suitable for you in light of your financial condition, level of experience and appetite for risk, and seek advice from an independent financial advisor, if you have any doubts. Alpari (US), LLC is dually registered with the CFTC as a Futures Commission Merchant and Retail Foreign Exchange Dealer and has been a member of the NFA since 2007 - Member ID: 0379678.