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1/11/2016 - Tomorrow's USDA Report.. A Ticking Time Bomb

For a couple of weeks analysts have been registering their expectation (see tables of analyst's estimates below) of tomorrow's USDA report release.  At 11:00 central time, they will update us with both the monthly WASDE report as well as the Quarterly Grain Stocks report.  The January release finalizes the 2015 crop and will give us hard(ish) numbers on yield, acres and consequently total production.  In addition, the Stocks report gives us our first...

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1/7/2016 - Class lll Market Price Trajectory

In the last couple of weeks, holiday trade has defined the markets with less volume than normal and as a result, bigger moves than can often be witnessed under normal conditions when all participants are in play.  Winter storm Goliath caused enough concern in the closing days of 2015 to bolster a 50 cent rally in 2016 average Class III milk prices.  That came on the heels of a 10 cent average rally in spot cheese prices.  As the new year began, these rallies quickly unraveled as...

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1/5/2016 - Corn Market Technical Indicators...A Closer Look

Last week we talked about corn market fundamentals impacting cost of production and their implications on acreage and prices in the coming year.  We talked about the risk.  Let's focus a bit more on price.  Dialing in the view a little tighter, you can begin to see not only what the long-term risk to the corn market is, but also where prices may attempt to travel in the short term.  See Charts. A quick study of the charts reveals a few things about our current...

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12/28/2015 - Managing Corn Margins In 2016

It goes without saying that 2016 is creating its fair share of heartburn for producers assembling budgets and viewing current market opportunities (or lack thereof).  With markets mostly range-bound and at prices lower than most are willing to pursue aggressively, questions begin to arise regarding which crops to plant, how to manage inputs, and when and how to market bushels.  To that end there are a few considerations to make.   Regarding fertilizer inputs, prices...

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12/21/2015 - Livestock Markets In The Crosshairs

Of late, cattle markets have been under much scrutiny and pressure.  Cash cattle prices traded at $1.15 to $1.18/lb last week, tugging futures to new lows.  December cattle went down to $1.1697 on Thursday as a result.  Feeder cattle patterned similarly with new lows being established Thursday.  January futures moved to a low of $1.4320/lb.  This is the lowest level that prices have been in 2 1/2 years.  See Charts. In the wake of the sell-off,...

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