3 Big Things Today, July 23

Byline:

1. Grain, Soybean Futures Higher on Conditions Report

Crop futures were higher in overnight trading after the Crop progress Report showed corn conditions declined and bean ratings were left unchanged.

The U.S. corn crop was rated 57% good or excellent as of Sunday, down from 58% the previous week, the USDA said in a report. That’s also down from the 72% that earned top ratings at this time in 2018.

About 35% of the crop was silking, well behind the 66% average for this time of year, and only 5% was in the dough stage, half of normal, the USDA said.

Some 54% of soybeans were in good or excellent condition at the start of the week, unchanged from the previous week but well below the 70% that earned top marks at this time in 2018.

Forty percent of the crop was blooming, behind the prior average of 66% for this time of year, and 7% was setting pods, a quarter of the normal 28%, the government said in its report.

In wheat, 76% of the spring crop was rated good or excellent as of Sunday, unchanged from the previous week and just below the 79% that earned top ratings last year.

Winter wheat was 69% harvested, up from 57% a week earlier but down from the average for this time of year of 79%, the USDA said.

Corn futures for December delivery rose 3¼¢ to $4.30 a bushel overnight on the Chicago Board of Trade.

Soybean futures for November delivery added 3¼¢ to $9.09 a bushel overnight. Soy meal gained $1.20 to $315.60 a short ton, and soybean oil rose 0.2¢ to 28.37¢ a pound.

Wheat for September delivery gained 4¢ to $4.91¼ a bushel, while Kansas City futures added 3¾¢ to $4.33 a bushel.

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2. Export Inspections of Corn, Beans Plunge Week to Week, USDA Says

Inspections of corn and soybeans for overseas delivery both plunged week to week, while wheat assessments improved, according to the USDA.

Government officials inspected 438,045 metric tons of corn for delivery to offshore buyers in the seven days that ended on July 18, down from the 690,427 tons examined the previous week, the USDA said in a report.

Last week’s total was well below the 1.33 million tons assessed during the same week last year.

Soybean inspections dropped to 559,462 metric tons from 855,377 tons the previous week, the government said. That’s also down from the 728,139 inspected at this time in 2018.

Wheat assessments, meanwhile, rose to 433,117 metric tons through July 18, up from the 348,519 tons examined the previous week and slightly above the 429,297 tons assessed during the same week last year.

Since the start of the marketing year on September 1, the USDA has inspected 43.6 million metric tons of corn for offshore delivery. That’s down from 49.8 million tons at this time a year earlier.

The government has inspected 39.3 million tons of soybeans for overseas delivery, well below the 51.7 million tons that had been assessed during the same period the previous year.

Since the start of the grain’s marketing year on June 1, the USDA has inspected 3.39 million tons of wheat for export, which is up from the 2.66 million tons during the same period a year earlier.

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3. Isolated Storms Possible in Northern Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin as Weather Mostly Benign

Weather maps are mostly quiet this morning, which is good news after months of adverse weather.

Isolated thunderstorms are possible this afternoon and evening in parts of northern Illinois and Indiana, according to the National Weather Service.

Severe weather is unlikely to form, though wind gusts could hit 40 mph, the NWS said in a report early this morning.

Farther north in Wisconsin, some rainfall is expected this afternoon and early evening. Heavy rain, though brief, and lightning are expected.

There’s another chance for storms tomorrow and Friday through Monday in the region, the NWS said in its report.

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