PM Comments 3/31/15
Tuesday, March 31, 2015, 3:03 PM
Submitted by: Eric Kist
The long-awaited Quarterly Stocks and Acres reports from the USDA were released today, and the corn and bean markets felt the impact. Bearish numbers for corn led to a strong response from the trade, as the nearby corn futures dropped more than 18 cents. The Planting Intentions report listed preliminary corn acres for the upcoming spring at 89.2 million acres, which was fairly close to the average trade guess of 88.9 m/a. However, bears fed on the corn stocks number, as the March 1 stocks were reported to be 7.75 billion bushels—roughly 1.2 billion bushels higher than the average estimate, and indicative that usage was less than expected. A March 1st stocks number this high hasn’t been seen since 1987. Overall, managed money funds and speculators were overwhelmingly sellers, and fueled the move down on the day.
Despite the weakness in corn, soybeans managing to close higher on the day. Nearby May futures closed 5 ½ cents up, after a period of significant volatility up and down following the 11 AM report release. Intended soybean acres were estimated at 84.6 million, which was about 1.2 million less than the average trade guess, but still greater than last year’s record bean acres number of 83.7 m/a. Soybean stocks as of March 1st were reported to be 1.33 billion bushels, which was slightly lower than expected, but well within the range of estimates.
These reports will provide some short-term direction for traders, but the market will quickly shift attention to early-season weather patterns and planting progress as the spring season starts to get underway.
Have a good night!