Sunflowers in bloom 01 28 2019

As the oil markets kept a close watch on trade talks for any movement sunflower prices moved up or down 5-10 cents as the end of January approached.

Nearby NuSun and high oleic prices were down 10 to up 5 cents at regional crush plants, while new crop was unchanged, according to John Sandbakken in the Jan. 22 newsletter of the National Sunflower Association. Sandbakken, the NSA executive director, said that new crop NuSun cash prices are currently in a range of $16.75-$17.25 with high oleics at $17.20-$18 depending on location.

As of Jan. 22, NuSun prices at the Cargill plant in Fargo were $17.25 per hundredweight for delivery in February. At the ADM plant in Enderlin, N.D., NuSun prices were $16.70 for delivery in February.

High oleic sunflower prices were $17.20 in Fargo for delivery in February delivery. At Enderlin the price was $17.30 for February delivery.

The Chicago Board of Trade traders, along with the various commodity markets, are keeping a close eye on trade talks between the U.S. and China.

“This week U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said he did not see any progress made on structural issues that include intellectual property, stealing trade secrets and putting pressure on corporations to share information during trade talks with China the previous week in Beijing,” Sandbakken said. “The market reacted to this news with losses across the soy complex. The two sides are trying to reach a deal that avoids a scheduled March 2 escalation of U.S. tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods.”

Chinese officials were scheduled to visit Washington for further trade talks at the end of January. Hopefully the two sides come to some sort of agreement from which the markets can take some positive direction.

In the meantime, the sunflower market continues to keep an eye on South American weather and crop conditions for some kind of direction. In the past few weeks, weather conditions in South America have not been favorable for crop development and this, Sandbakken pointed out, is giving the oilseed complex some positive news.

“Several private crop analysts have reduced 2019 production forecasts,” he said. “The mostly hot and dry pattern in Brazil, is expected to extend for another two weeks giving the market some optimism for increased U.S. exports.

“Overall price direction will continue to be determined by export demand news and South American oil seed production prospects in the near term,” he concluded.

As stated above, new crop sunflower prices for 2019 are out at the North Dakota crush plants with cash and Act of God (AOG) contracts available and remained unchanged. New crop contract prices for 2019 NuSun sunflower in Fargo were listed at $17.25 cash and $16.75 with an AOG clause. At Enderlin, new crop price contracts were posted at $16.90 cash and $16.40 with an AOG clause.

High oleic new crop prices for 2019 were $17.25 cash and $16.75 with an AOG in Fargo, and $17.20 cash and $16.70 with an AOG clause at the Enderlin plant.