Corn Futures Rise as USDA Reports Robust Feed Demand
Corn for March delivery rose 0.7% to $3.85 3/4 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade on Friday, as the USDA's monthly report showed higher-than-expected domestic demand from animal feed. Wheat for March delivery gained 0.4% to $5.64 1/2 a bushel. Soybeans for March delivery rose 0.3% to $9.46 a bushel.
The USDA unexpectedly raised its estimate for corn for feed by 250 million bushels to 5.525 billion bushels and reduced its forecast for ending stocks by 18 million bushels. Traders shrugged off the news that the USDA expects more 2019/20 corn production, contrary to their expectations that the agency would cut its estimates. Bad weather delayed corn planting and harvesting, but the USDA said a higher yield more than offset a reduction in the harvested area.
Farmers Reap Big Harvest After Tough Year
Farmers are harvesting more corn and soybeans than expected this season, lifting prospects for a sector hurt by bad weather and trade tensions.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture said Friday that it expects U.S. farmers to reap 13.69 billion bushels of corn from last year's crop and 3.56 billion bushels of soybeans. Analysts had expected corn production of around 13.49 billion bushels and soybean production of 3.52 billion bushels.
Beyond Meat's Shares Had Their Best Week in Months -- Update
It was a remarkable week for Beyond Meat Inc.
Shares of the plant-based meat substitute company soared more than 20% this week, posting their biggest weekly gain since July and well outpacing the S&P 500's 0.9% rise.
What drove the stock higher? For one, McDonald's Corp. said Wednesday it would expand its experiment in Canada with burgers using Beyond Meat-supplied patties. The fast-food giant plans to sell the P.L.T. sandwich -- short for plant, lettuce and tomato -- at 52 restaurants in Ontario starting Jan. 14, up from an initial 28 locations last year.
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US, Canada Farm Tractors Sales Flat in 2019 -- Market Talk
1409 ET - Retail sales volumes of large farm tractors in the US and Canada finished 2019 flat with 2018 at 21,809 units, says the Association of Equipment Manufacturers. Sales of tractors above 100 horsepower were down 1% in 4Q from a year earlier. Unit sales of harvesting combines slipped 5% in the quarter and finished 2019 off 6.3% from 2018. Lower cash receipts from farming last year and anxiety about exports of US farm products caused farmers to be cautious about buying equipment. Equipment manufacturers Deere and Agco expect sales volumes of farm equipment in North America to slip about 5% in 2020 from 2019. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
European Food Retailers Set to Step Up Meal-Delivery Dealmaking: Bryan Garnier -- Market Talk
1708 GMT - Food retailers are eyeing the fast-growing meal-delivery segment and are expected to strike acquisitions and partnerships with specialists to tap this trend, Bryan Garnier analysts say after French food retailer Carrefour snaps up 60% of meal delivery company Dejbox. The meal-delivery market already accounts for $82 billion in sales worldwide and is forecast to grow 10% per year in 2018-26 according to Research and Markets, and is growing 20% per year in France, the brokerage says. M&A and partnerships in this space have so far been limited in Europe, but more players and larger deals should follow as the entire online food sector is consolidating, Bryan Garnier says, citing the Just Eat-Takeaway merger as evidence. (email@example.com)
Livestock Futures Finish Higher After WASDE -- Market Talk
15:39 ET - Livestock futures on the CME finish higher, led by live cattle futures. Cattle futures rise 0.6% to $1.27425 per pound, amid forecasts of lower beef production in 2020 according to the USDA's monthly WASDE report. "The 2020 beef production forecast is reduced on lighter expected carcass weights," the USDA says. "However, quarterly beef production was increased in the first half of the year and reduced in the second half of the year due to higher-than-expected cattle placements in late 2019 and a reduced placement forecast for early 2020." Meanwhile, lean hog futures rose 0.3% to 67.25 cents per pound to close out the day. (firstname.lastname@example.org; @kirkmaltais)