The wheat complex continued its downward trend with continued harvest pressure in the winter wheat areas and a quiet export market. $5 support in Chicago failed with new support in the $4.85 range, while the $5.20 level in Minneapolis and the $4.30 level in Kansas City held. Matif Wheat futures were 2.0% lower to $174.75 per metric ton September with support at $173 per metric ton.
Spring wheat conditions declined 2% to 76% good to excellent. Trade was expecting an improvement to 79%. 20% of the crop is rated fair and 4% poor to very poor. Spring wheat headed is at 78% vs. 87% for the 5-year average. Barley and Oats conditions both improved 3% and are tracking 14% and 8% behind normal heading, respectively. Winter wheat is 57% harvested compared to 71% for the 5-year average.
Lack of fresh export news is also pressuring the complex. Weekly export sales were within expectations at 347,300 metric tons (12.8 million bushels). Sales over the first 6 weeks of the marketing season are averaging 12.5 million bushels vs. the 13.6 million bushels "needed" pace to reach USDA's 950 million bushel export target. Weekly export inspections were 315,000 metric tons (11.6 million bushels). This was well below the expected range of 400,00 to 600,000 metric tons. Egypt purchased 60,000 metric tons of wheat from Russia. Japan's weekly tender saw the US noticeably absent with Canada and Australia as the likely sellers.
France is expecting another round of very high temperatures next week which will further erode soil moisture profiles. Although harvest is coming along, this could impact fall seeded crops.
The U.S. dollar has been rangebound from a July 9th high of $97.16 to the $96.34 level. The weakness in the dollar over the latter part of the week was not enough to offset harvest pressure.
For the week ending July 18, September contracts for Minneapolis wheat were down 17.25 cents at $5.255, down 29.5 cents at $4.935 for Chicago wheat, and down 34.5 cents at $4.3275 for Kansas City wheat.
Corn futures looked like they were going to start off the week on the right foot Sunday night as corn started the week up 5 cents. That didn't last as the trade turned bearish Monday morning and through the rest of the week. Corn had a rough week as rains hit areas in southern Illinois and Indiana that needed a shot of moisture as they try to recover from poor root development. These rains came up from the tropical storm that hit Louisiana. Weekly export inspections and sales were also very disappointing again.
The weather forecast was also showing cool and dry over the next two weeks. This continues to put bearish pressure on the market as late planted crops are expected to catch up with favorable weather. We are now looking at frost date being the next weather factor that could have major implications on the markets. USDA's resurvey of the planted 2019 U.S. area and 1st report on 2019 prevented planting acreage will be released on Aug. 11.
Corn conditions on July 14th were raised 1% to 57% good to excellent with the trade expecting a decrease of one percent. 30% of the crop is rated fair and 12% is rated poor to very poor. Corn silking is at 17% vs. the 5-year average of 42% and 59% last year. This means the heat in the 2 week forecast could affect some areas that may start pollinating.
A crop that is three to four weeks behind schedule could be swaying the ratings as crop conditions usually go down this time of year as the crop nears pollination. This year the crop is improving as we are still well away from pollination and that is typically when ratings decrease as heat affects the plant more.
December corn continued traded to a low of $4.28 this week, only 8 cents off from the 4.20-4.225 gap set back on May 28th. Lots of questions remain to be answered, possibly leaving us rangebound until we get confirmation later this summer.
Soybean futures dropped back below $9 again as a cooler and less threatening extended forecast is keeping the bears in control. Export sales continue to be lackadaisical, and that will only lead to more ending stocks carrying over to the 2019-20 marketing season. Brazil continues to grow its market share of exports to China as the trade war between the U.S. and China goes into the second year.
After the heat wave in the eastern corn belt, average to slightly less than average moisture is expected across the Midwest for the next two weeks after this weekend. This cool weather may help limit stress with the dry forecast, but what this crop really needs is heat units, and that is not what the rest of July is forecast to give the crop.
The trade was also trading July 14th soybean crop conditions that were raised 1% to 54% good to excellent from the week prior and compared to 69% good to excellent last year. Average analyst estimates were expecting unchanged ratings. The crop is also rated 34% fair and 12% poor to very poor. These are still 7-year lows for soybean crop ratings though.
Soybeans emerged came in at 95% versus 100% last year and 99% for the 5-year average. Soybeans blooming came in a 22% versus 49% last year and 62% for the 5-year average. This could mean more soybeans will be trying to fill out in the heat during the dog days of summer.
The National Oilseed Processors Association reported that U.S. soybean crush for June dropped to 148.843 million bushels. This is the lowest monthly total in nearly two years. This was well below analyst expectations of 154.405 million bushels. Farm Futures stated that "flood-related downtime at multiple processing plants was partly to blame."
First support is the month low of $8.90 and then the bottom end of the gap left in November soybean futures at $8.58 to $8.645 on May 25. The November contract low of $8.155 set on May 13 recovery is the contract low.
November major resistance at $9.3125 on the weekly chart and $9.48 on the daily charts. The 10-month high of $9.71 for new crop soybeans that was set on Dec. 12. November soybeans lost 32.5 cents for the week ending Thursday, July 18.
For week ending July 18, July Canola futures were down $1.80 at $445.40 Canadian per metric ton. The July Canadian dollar was down .0002 at 0.7674. This brings the U.S. price to $15.50 per hundredweight.
• Velva, N.D., $14.26 per hundredweight, September at $14.26.
• Enderlin, N.D., no bid, September at $14.26.
• Hallock, Minn., $14.80 per hundredweight, September at $14.63.
• Fargo, N.D., $14.95 per hundredweight, September at $14.70.
Cash feed barley bids in Minneapolis were at $3.25, while malting barley received no quote. Berthold bid is $2.75 and CHS Southwest New Salem bid $3.
Cash bids for milling quality durum are $4.80 in Berthold and at $4.80 in Dickinson.
Cash sunflower bids in Fargo were at $17.70, Oct. $17. For the week ending July 18, soybean oil was down 54 cents at $27.64 on the August contract.