Soybean Futures Rise as Market Digests Coronavirus Worries
Soybeans for May delivery eked out a 0.3% gain to $8.95 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade on Thursday, helped by moves in Argentina to curb exports. Wheat for May delivery fell 1.5% to $5.27 1/2 a bushel. Corn for May delivery fell 1.7% to $3.68 a bushel.
While most markets slid on worries about the coronavirus epidemic, soybeans were supported by speculation about reduced shipments from Argentina if the government raises export taxes as expected. In addition, China, a major soybean buyer, is seeing some improvement on the virus front. "China at least is showing a drop in new cases and deaths, with experts there believing the virus can be controlled by the end of April," said Arlan Suderman of INTL FCStone. April is when China is expected to begin buying U.S. agricultural goods in earnest as part of the phase one trade deal.
Grain Export Sales Largely Miss Projections -- Market Talk
09:04 ET - Wheat and soybean export sales missed the projections of traders polled by The Wall Street Journal -- with wheat sales totaling 381,800 metric tons and soybeans totaling 339,300 tons, according to the USDA's latest report. Soybeans missed the low-end of trader targets by over 200,000 tons, with new Chinese purchases totaling only 71,700 tons. For traders growing impatient to see the January trade deal between the US and China yield tangible results, these figures will likely be bearish. Meanwhile, export sales of sorghum hit a marketing year high of 444,500 tons, with sales to unknown destinations totaling 324,200 tons. Corn sales fell on the low end of trader forecasts, totaling 864,600 tons. (email@example.com; @kirkmaltais)
Beyond Meat Plans to Tout Healthfulness of its Burgers--2nd Update
Beyond Meat Inc. said it plans a marketing push to promote the healthiness of its plant-based meat alternatives and push back on criticism that its burgers and sausage are heavily processed.
The California-based company said on Thursday that it plans to place promotions on social media and other digital platforms bolstering the better-for-you sensibility that helped Beyond more than triple sales in 2019, enabling the still-small fake-meat business to grow faster than sales of the genuine variety.
The company lost $452,000 in the quarter, which Mr. Brown said reflected temporary manufacturing problems at plants Beyond recruited to help meet demand for its products. That compared to a loss of $7.5 million loss in 2018's fourth quarter.
Beyond reported an adjusted fourth-quarter profit of $9.5 million. Analyst surveyed by FactSet anticipated net income of $725,000 on sales of $81.2 million.
STORIES OF INTEREST:
SunOpta Up 16% on 4Q Results
SunOpta Inc. shares rose 16% to $2.77 as the company reported fourth-quarter results.
SunOpta's products include food ingredients and packaged foods such as soy milk, fruit snacks and sunflowers.
Adjusted loss was 6 cents a share, compared with an adjusted loss of 11 cents a share a year earlier, while revenue fell to $295.8 million from $320.5 million.
Food-Delivery Company DoorDash Files Confidentially for IPO
DoorDash Inc. Thursday said it has confidentially submitted a draft registration with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for a proposed initial public offering.
The San Francisco food-delivery company said the number of shares it will offer and the price range haven't yet been determined.
Livestock Backs Off of Limit-Down Close in Volatile Day -- Market Talk
15:47 ET - Livestock futures on the CME finish lower, but both lean-hog and live-cattle futures managed to avert finishing limit-down for the day. April live cattle fall 1.7% at $1.10475 a pound, while hogs decline 4% to 62.55c. Cattle futures are now off 8.5% over the past six sessions, down to their lowest level since mid-September. Coronavirus's spread throughout the globe is the primary driver for volatility seen in agricultural futures as a whole. (firstname.lastname@example.org; @kirkmaltais)