Modern technical trading wizards claim the adage voice of the tomb, a trade system to buy or sell corn or wheat, is witchcraft, but the dates are based on seasonal trends.

The dates were left behind from a deceased legendary grain trader for others to use. What's more seasonal than grains that have planting and growing seasons?

WHEN TO BUY

March 1 looms ahead as a key voice of the tomb date to buy corn. From the seasonal viewpoint, the uncertainty of the planting season begins in late March to early April in the southern delta states where temperatures already are eclipsing 60°.

The grain season essentially wakes up after a long winter's nap to begin all the pricing uncertainties of how much of each grain will be planted or not planted.

FIRST KEY REPORT

The March 30 planting intention report, a survey of farmers planting ideas, becomes the season's first key report.

Weather affects early emergence and eventually yields, creating wide weather premium rallies and breaks. March is when all the discussion begins for the new grain season. So getting position begins as February winds down.

CURRENT CONDITIONS

We enter another year with tight ending stocks of corn at 801 million bushels. This is the lowest since 1995. Our stocks to use ratio is 6.3% the second lowest in history. World corn ending stocks to use ratio at 14.4% is the lowest since 1974. This allows no margin for growing season error.

WHAT TO WATCH

There are two reports that lie ahead, that will have short held positions buy back and speculators buying long as March 1 enters.

  • One, the March 9 USDA monthly crop report. Traders will fear the drought in South America, especially in Argentina, the world's second top corn producer exporter. A drought will have the report lowering corn ending stocks further as importers turn to U.S. ports to fill needs.
  • Two, the March 30 planting intention report. Like the last three years, it will have fear we won't increase corn acres enough to offset surging world demand. The next four trading days should be used to buy any break in corn off month-end profit-taking business.

May corn has minor support at 6.30 but major chart support at 6.20.

Get a trade idea for cotton from Darin Newsom.