WASHINGTON — The trade dispute shadow continues to hang over the commodity complex and limit any major moves in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s supply/demand projections.

Here are the main messages delivered in the Feb. 8 report.

SOYBEANS: NO CHANGES WERE MADE IN THE SEASON-AVERAGE PRICE RANGE FROM LAST MONTH OF $8.10 TO $9.10 PER BUSHEL.

Why?

  • Soybean crush was increased by 10 million bushels to 2.1 billion on higher domestic disappearance of soybean meal and a lower soybean meal extraction rate reflecting data reported by National Agricultural Statistics Service in the oilseed crushings report.
  • With exports unchanged, soybean stocks are projected at 900 million bushels, down 10 million from last month.
  • With increased crush, soybean oil production was hiked by 115 million pounds to 24.6 billion.
  • Soybean oil used for methyl ester production for biodiesel was raised 200 million pounds to 8.2 billion on record production for the first quarter of the marketing year. With increased production more than offset by higher use, soybean oil stocks are forecast lower.
  • Global soybean production was reduced 0.9 million tons to 360.1 million on lower production for Brazil and Paraguay. Production for Brazil is down 0.5 million tons to 116.5 million, reflecting dry weather conditions and lower yields for Minas Gerais, Mato Grosso do Sul and Goias.
  • China’s soybean crush pace is expected to increase during the second half of the marketing year as the South American harvest advances and leads to increased global supplies. Global oilseed ending stocks are up 0.8 million tons to 121.7 million, with soybeans accounting for 0.5 million of the increase.

CORN: THE SEASON-AVERAGE PRICE RANGE WAS LOWERED BY 10 CENTS ON THE HIGH END TO $3.75 PER BUSHEL AND THE BOTTOM RANGE REMAINED AT $3.35.

Why?

  • Corn used to produce ethanol was lowered 25 million bushels to 5.550 billion based on the most recent data from the grain crushings and co-products production report and the pace of weekly ethanol production during February as indicated by Energy Information Administration data.
  • Exports were reduced 75 million bushels to 2.375 billion, reflecting diminished U.S. price competitiveness and expectations of increased exports for Brazil and Argentina. With no other use changes, ending stocks are raised 100 million bushels to 1.835 billion.
  • Food, seed and industrial use was reduced by 5 million bushels reflecting a reduction in the projected amount of sorghum used to produce ethanol. Offsetting is a 20 million bushel increase in feed and residual use.
  • Foreign corn ending stocks for 2018-2019 were lowered from last month, mostly reflecting reductions for China, Brazil and Argentina.

WHEAT: THE SEASON-AVERAGE FARM PRICE RANGE MIDPOINT WAS UNCHANGED AT $5.15 PER BUSHELS WITH A RANGE OF $5.10 TO $5.20.

Why?

  • Supplies were increased by 5 million bushels on higher imports.
  • Wheat exports were reduced by 35 million bushels to 965 million with reductions in hard red spring and white on stronger than expected export competition for these classes.
  • Wheat food use was lowered by 5 million bushels to 965 million, based primarily on the latest NASS flour milling products report. Wheat ground for flour was lower in the first half of the 2018-2019 marketing year than previously forecast.
  • Projected 2018-2019 ending stocks were raised 45 million bushels to 1.055 billion.
  • Global ending stocks are increased 3 million tons to 270.5 million, down 3 percent from last year’s record.

Tom C. Doran can be reached at 815-780-7894 or tdoran@agrinews-pubs.com. Follow him on Twitter at: @AgNews_Doran.

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