Tag Archives: wheat

Grain elevators face significant challenges in the year ahead as they buy basis on corn, soybeans and wheat at the highest levels seen in years, according to a new report.

CoBank reports basis for the three major grains is significantly tighter across the country from strong end-user bids, limited pipeline supplies, and lack of farmer selling amid an uncertain fall harvest. A CoBank researcher says, “grain elevators are being compelled to offer farmers a range of incentives to sell bushels,” including lower rates on storage, free delayed pricing and free grain drying, all cutting into elevator margins.

Grain quality issues resulting from high moisture at harvest and frost damage on immature crops will also raise management costs for elevators, potentially resulting in greater losses to shrinkage and spoilage. A propane supply shortage in some regions is also driving up the cost of drying grain.

However, grain elevators also have an opportunity to improve margins in an otherwise stressful year, as basis will likely soften as more bushels come to market as harvest operations conclude.

Wheat bulls, Chinese politics, and USDA formulas are all topics of discussion to start the week off on the Fontanelle Final Bell. Darrin Fessler, Lakefront Futures, looks at the wheat market at possible momentum and technical trading to the upside. Fessler notes that it’s unusual to see the Minneapolis wheat futures at a discount to Chicago wheat futures.

Following the weekend election results in Hong Kong Bejing may be feeling political pressure to get a Phase One Trade deal signed with the US.

Finally Fessler looks at how the USDA is currently formulating feed use in the US and if the latest cattle on feed report will have an impact on that formula.

 As of Sunday, Nov. 24, 16% of the corn crop and 6% of soybeans were still in the field, according to USDA NASS’ latest Crop Progress report released Monday.

It’s because of that delay in bringing in the last of the crops that NASS announced last week it will continue to issue its weekly Crop Progress reports beyond the originally scheduled end date of Nov. 25. The agency said in a news release that it will evaluate the harvest progress for all crops each week to determine how long to continue the report.

Nationwide, the corn harvest slowed again last week, moving ahead 8 percentage points to reach 84% complete as of Sunday, 12 percentage points behind the five-year average of 96%.

“That is the slowest pace since 68% was harvested on Nov. 22, 2009,” said DTN Senior Analyst Dana Mantini. “North Dakota was only 30% harvested versus 23% last week, Michigan moved from 39% to 56%, Wisconsin rose from 44% to 57% and South Dakota went from 53% to 68% planted. Iowa is 86% and Illinois is 88% harvested.”

Soybean harvest also slowed last week, inching ahead only 3 percentage points to reach 94% as of Sunday. That was 3 percentage points behind the five-year average of 97%.

“The current soybean harvest progress is tied with both Nov. 22, 2009, and Nov. 24, 2018, as the slowest,” Mantini said. “Michigan and Wisconsin are the slowest, with soybean harvest at 80% and 82% done compared to averages of 94% and 97%, respectively. Illinois and Indiana are 95% and 94% done, while Iowa is 97% harvested.”

Winter wheat emerged was estimated at 87% as of Sunday, still 3 percentage points behind the five-year average of 90%. Winter wheat condition held steady at 52% good to excellent. That was slightly below last year’s good-to-excellent rating at the same time of 55%.

Sorghum harvested reached 97%, ahead of the five-year average of 92%. Cotton harvested was estimated at 78%, also ahead of the average pace of 74%.

To view the weekly crop progress report visit: https://usda.library.cornell.edu/concern/publications/8336h188j

Clay Patton has the audio report here:

National Crop Progress Summary
This Last Last 5-Year
Week Week Year Avg.
Corn Harvested 84 76 93 96
Soybeans Harvested 94 91 94 97
Winter Wheat Emerged 87 83 85 90
Cotton Harvested 78 68 68 74
Sorghum Harvested 97 93 88 92


National Crop Condition Summary
(VP = Very Poor; P = Poor; F = Fair; G = Good; E = Excellent)
This Week Last Week Last Year
Winter Wheat 4 10 34 41 11 4 10 34 41 11 3 10 32 45 10


National Soil Moisture Condition – 48 States
(VS = Very Short; SH = Short; AD = Adequate; SR = Surplus)
This Week Last Week Last Year
Topsoil Moisture 5 12 66 17 5 13 65 17 3 7 69 21
Subsoil Moisture 5 13 67 15 5 14 66 15 5 11 67 17

Lower corn & beans for a Friday.  Pre-holiday works going on.  Look at the basis in the country.  Ethanol is making some profits.  Dry down late harvest issues.  Export markets for both grain & livestock.  Feeder cattle lead the way lower.  Boxes took a drop which didn’t help the market.

P.J. Conradt, Tredas, joins the marketing conversation to start the week. Overall grains were mixed with corn and soybeans lower, wheat higher. Conradt looks at the current supply demand fundamentals and how that helps to shape the current trade. Conradt also discusses how this may shape 2020 planting decisions and how it can work into current marketing plans.

Listen to the latest episode here:


Drought conditions in the southern U.S. plains continue to be a growing concern for winter wheat producers. The southern plains are the top winter wheat producing region in the country. Extra precipitation helped to boost yields and harvests this year, even though growers planted fewer acres than in previous growing seasons.

A return to the more typical arid conditions may put some limit on crop potential come harvest time in 2020. However, other countries that grow a lot of wheat are also having some concerns. Growers in Great Britain are hoping for dry weather to help pick up the pace in planting throughout rain-soaked farm fields. Growers in Ukraine, a major wheat-producing competitor of the U.S. need a good rainfall on their newly planted fields before settling in for the winter.

As the planting period is mostly coming to an end in the northern hemisphere, places like France and Germany have seen higher-than-normal rainfall over the past month. That’s not only slowed the harvest of summer crops, but it’s also planting of winter wheat behind schedule.

Russia is the world’s top winter wheat exporter and may plant a record amount of the crop this year. Favorable temps and near-normal moisture have made it possible for Russian producers to plant in an ideal timeframe.

Lower corn & beans while soybeans were higher.  Lackluster trade, currency issues with Brazil.  Yield loss is visible in North Dakota.   Harvest progress…upcoming weather system.  Corn plan lacks direction.  Quiet cattle market after Friday’s cattle on feed report.

A phone conversation with China, leads to some positive moves. African Swine Fever-market prices are 3x in some area’s of China. Talk of food issues within the country. Snow next week and this week in the Texas Panhandle how that will effect the winter wheat. Harvest yields are getting smaller.