Chicago Grains End Lower Ahead Of Key USDA Data

09/11/15 -- Soycomplex: Beans closed mixed but mostly around a cent or two lower. The USDA announced the sale of 126,000 MT of US soybeans to unknown destinations for 2015/16 delivery, along with another 256,740 MT being switched from unknown destinations to China. Customs data from the latter shows that they imported 5.53 MMT of beans in October, up 35% from a year previously. Their calendar year imports (Jan/Oct) are now 65.18 MMT, a 15% rise compared to the same period in 2014. Weekly export inspections came in at a very respectable total just in excess of 2 MMT, underlying the strong demand at these levels theme. The USDA's FAS in Brazil cut their forecast for production there in 2015/16 to a still record 98.5 MMT citing planting delays. Plantings in the leading state of Mato Grosso are the slowest in the last 5 years, and the east of the state is only 15% done versus 40-50% normally, they said. Ukraine said that their 2015 soybean harvest was 96% complete at just over 3 MMT. After the close the USDA said that the US 2015 harvest was now 95% complete, up 3 points from a week ago, 6 points ahead of last year and 2 points more than the 5-year average. The trade is looking for increased US soybean yields and production in tomorrow's USDA WASDE report. The average trade estimate for production is around 3.914 billion bushels with yields at 47.5 bu/acre versus the USDA’s October numbers of 3.888 billion and 47.2 bu/acre. This day a year ago the USDA raised soybean yields by 0.4 bu/acre from their October estimate. Nov 15 Soybeans settled at $8.73 1/2, up 2 1/4 cents; Jan 16 Soybeans settled at $8.66 1/4, down 1 cent; Dec 15 Soybean Meal settled at $295.00, down $0.70; Dec 15 Soybean Oil settled at 27.77, down 27 points.

Corn: The corn market closed with losses of around 6 cents. Weekly export inspections of only 295,701 MT were down 38% from the previous week and provided little support. The current cumulative pace is 25% behind this time last year. The USDA reported the 2015 US corn harvest at 93% complete versus 85% a week ago, 88% on average and only 78% done this time last year. Bloomberg reported that Japan imported 9.7 MMT of corn in the first 8 months of 2015, with 8.37 MMT, or 86%, of that coming from the US. Imports from Brazil by contrast were only 878 TMT (9%) and from Ukraine 336 TMT (3.5%). They are now expected to pick up their imports from the latter two suppliers, at the expense of US origin material, in the final quarter of 2015 due to price considerations. Both Brazilian and Ukraine corn are said to offer savings of around $10/tonne over US corn. Ukraine said that it's 2015 corn harvest was now 86% complete at 19.3 MMT. That implies final production of 22.44 MMT, not the 25 MMT that the USDA currently predict. They will of course have an opportunity to revisit that number in tomorrow's WASDE report. In that, the average trade guess for US corn production is 13.564 billion bu (the USDA were 13.555 billion last month) and a yield of 168.2 bu/acre (the USDA were 168.0 bu/acre in October). A year ago the USDA surprised the trade by lopping 0.8 bu/acre off final US corn yields in their November report. Spanish analysts AgroInfoMarket estimated corn production there in 2016 at 10.92 MMT versus 10.40 MMT this year. They see 2016/17 Spanish corn imports at 6.1 MMT versus 6.25 MMT this season, and ending stocks at 764 TMT compared to 738 TMT in 2015/16. Dr Cordonnier reports that the Brazilian states, Mato Grosso, Goias, and Tocantins are contemplating placing a 12% export tax on corn, soybeans and other grains. Dec 15 Corn settled at $3.66 3/4, down 6 1/4 cents; Mar 16 Corn settled at $3.76, down 5 3/4 cents.

Wheat: The wheat market closed sharply lower across the three exchanges. Weekly export inspections of 282.6 TMT were better than a week ago, but hardly stellar. Year to date inspections are 18% down versus 12 months previously, they may need to revise those already low expectations even lower tomorrow. Wheat exports from Ukraine seaports were 463.3 TMT last week, report APK Inform. From Russian seaports they were 507.4 TMT. Russian customs data shows that they have exported 16.38 TMT of wheat since the new 2015/16 season began on Jul 1. US wheat exports to Oct 29 are only around half of that at 8.7 MMT. "A disappointing winter wheat crop has been gathered in the United States this season continuing a trend of smaller wheat harvests. A succession of smaller harvests are having a negative impact on wheat exports, as well. The 1.44 billion bushels of (winter) wheat gathered in the 2015 harvest is down from 1.51 billion bushels, the previous 5-year average. Winter wheat production has been declined – not due to poor yields but rather shrinking acreage. Most of the blame goes to Kansas, the leading US wheat state. The trend in shrinking wheat acres began several years ago. Producers in Kansas have chosen to diversify their crops, planting less wheat in favour of corn, soybeans and sorghum," said Martell Crop Projections. Winter wheat crop worries in Ukraine and Russia remain about the only supportive factor around at the moment. Ukraine say that their winter wheat crop is only 90% planted on 5.57 million ha. UkrAgroConsult say that only 29% of the crop is in good condition versus 41% this time last year. The USDA reported US winter wheat plantings for the 2016 harvest at 92% complete after the close, up 4 points on a week ago but 2 points behind the 5-year average. Emergence is in line with average at 80%. Good to excellent conditions improved 2 points to 51%. Dec 15 CBOT Wheat settled at $5.01 3/4, down 21 1/2 cents; Dec 15 KCBT Wheat settled at $4.74, down 16 1/4 cents; Dec 15 MGEX Wheat settled at $5.04 1/4, down 14 1/2 cents.