Amid weather concerns, demand buoys bean prices

2017-05-17T08:39:00Z Amid weather concerns, demand buoys bean pricesBy Roy Leidahl, Illinois Farmer Today Illinois Farmer Today

Weather is staying high in market concerns.

“We’re getting past the critical date for peak production on corn,” said Pete Fish, risk management associate at INTL FCStone in Kansas City.

Some analysts suggest lower odds of harvesting a national trend yield.

“So they predict higher prices for December corn as we go along,” Fish said. “The market is not telling that to us yet.”

Beyond weather, “the overriding factor in most of these commodities is the outside influence” of funds, he said.

“They continue record short positions. … What kind of news does it take to shake them loose?” Fish said.

The prospect of acres shifting to soybeans raises some market concern, but Fish said “what was amazing to me was why we are not near $8 or $8.50 or $8.75” in futures, given the huge South American crop. “The exports are just tremendous.”

Corn export shipments also are ahead of the five-year average, and buyers in southwestern Kansas and the Texas Panhandle tend to help basis in the western Corn Belt, said Dan O’Brien, Kansas State University Extension economist.

In a typical year, when supplies are tighter than they are now, buyers in those regions reach far into the Corn Belt.

Bids in the Hereford, Texas, area were as high as $4.13 early this week, but “a good amount of weakness has been the piles of grain … all over the country,” O’Brien said.

Warm weather is providing an incentive to move grain from those piles to preserve quality.

Filling feedlot and ethanol demand now is “a matter of how quickly grain can be pulled out of those piles,” O’Brien said.

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