3 Grain Market

With a mid-April snow storm hitting parts of the Midwest and wet weather forecast behind it, the odds for a delayed planting season continue to increase. The markets are waiting to see exactly how long the wait may be.

“Right now the trade in Chicago isn’t too worried about planting,” Todd Jafvert, an ag consultant for Roach Ag Marketing in Perry, Iowa, said. “They know we can put a lot of corn in the ground very quickly. However, it’s in the back of their minds.”

He said for the market to see an accelerated move, the conditions of wet soil and cold weather may need to extend into May.

“It’s a creeper market,” Jafvert said. “It creeps a little bit each week through the month of April. We would accelerate the move by the middle of May if we are considerably behind our five-year average and the forecast continues to remain cool and wet.”

If there is a major delay in planting, there may be a significant switch in acreage, as some farmers might switch over to more soybeans instead of corn. However, the market isn’t yet factoring that in.

“We have not seen that at all yet,” Jafvert said. “Not at all. I’m not sure we are going to see that until that time where we start to worry about corn planting. The bean market has actually held together much better than I had anticipated. It’s not going anywhere. It doesn’t go up or down. I figured the bean market would be considerably lower than what we are at right now.”

While the soybean market stays relatively steady, the wheat market continues to battle supply and demand questions, Jafvert said.

Egypt recently tendered for wheat, but opted to select shipments from the Black Sea region, despite it being reported that the U.S. had the lowest offer out, he said. The heightened ocean shipping costs led to the U.S. missing out on the sale.

“The wheat market is tough,” Jafvert said. “The world is swimming in wheat, and the U.S. has become the residual supplier for other places. Most of the export wheat is coming out of the Black Sea. We may start worrying about spring wheat as far as getting it planted, but the market hasn’t been concerned about that yet.”