USDA Releases Details of $16B Aid Package for Farmers -- Market Talk
12:26 ET - The USDA has released details of how $16B in aid for farmers struggling from the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic will be apportioned, with the FSA accepting applications for aid from farmers beginning May 26. According to the USDA, producers of nonspecialty crops like corn and soybeans will be paid based on inventory subject to price risk held as of Jan. 15--50% of a producer's total production in 2019 or their inventory of old crop, whichever is smaller, multiplied by the commodity's applicable payment rates. "These payments will help keep farmers afloat while market demand returns as our nation reopens and recovers," Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue says. The program also covers livestock producers, dairy producers and farmers of specialty crops like almonds. (firstname.lastname@example.org; @kirkmaltais)
China Ramping Up Purchases of U.S. Farm Goods
China has significantly stepped up purchases of U.S. agriculture products in the past two months, according to U.S. officials, even as purchases in other sectors fall short of expectations under the first phase U.S.-China trade deal.
In the 10 weeks ended May 7, gross sales of U.S. corn and pork were up around eight times and cotton sales were three times higher than they were in the same period in 2017, before the start of the U.S.-China trade war. Soybean exports to China, the largest component of U.S. farm export receipts, rose roughly a third in the same period, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture data.
STORIES OF INTEREST:
Wheat Bounces as Higher Exports Eyed
Wheat for July delivery rose 0.4% to $4.98 3/4 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade Tuesday, with traders inching wheat off a seven-month low on hopes of stronger export sales ahead.
Wheat futures inched up Tuesday, although trading on the July contract remains below $5 a bushel. Nations in the Middle East are expected to return to the export market next week, once Ramadan concludes. "The export line up for wheat promises more to come next week with Ramadan ending this weekend," said Charlie Sernatinger of ED&F Man Capital, noting an active tender from Iran looking for August delivery.
Chinese Interest Gives Corn a Boost -- Market Talk
13:22 ET - Reports that China is interested in purchasing more US corn exports has CBOT futures higher Tuesday -- although the uptick may be short-lived, according to traders. "China is sniffing around for corn for the second day today, inquiring about pricing," says Arlan Suderman of INTL FCStone. Even so, traders are not generally bullish in the longer-term on corn's supply and demand prospects, Suderman says. One thing that might support a longer rally in corn futures is if tomorrow's report from the EIA shows a big increase in ethanol production, traders say -- a possibility as more communities around the US reopen and drivers consume more gasoline. (email@example.com; @kirkmaltais)
Livestock Finish Day Trending Down -- Market Talk
15:14 ET - Livestock futures on the CME finish trading lower, with lean hog futures falling 1.7% to 56.65 cents a pound and live-cattle futures paring gains to close just 0.1% higher at 98.775c. The drop in prices comes as cutout prices decline as packing plants try to make up for going offline due to Covid-19, although many cuts are still much higher in price than they were before the crisis hit. Longer term, cattle prices are trending higher, with the futures contract rising 14% since the start of the month. However, hog futures have fallen 5.8% in that same timeframe. (firstname.lastname@example.org; @kirkmaltais)