About The Author

Bill Moore

William Moore's market views are centered around his many relationships with Agricultural producers. His weekly newsletter, AGMASTER, provides a blend of fundamental & technical information used to make prudent hedging decisions. Contact Mr. Moore at (312) 264-4337



A postponement of the Mar 27 Trade Summit between the US & China and a neutral/negative USDA Supply & Demand Report were enough to push May beans down 16 cents for the week to a 3-month low close at 895. Finalizing the trade pact is turning out to be quite a daunting task but Trump needs it economically & politically – and it will happen!


1) EXPORTS – Mon Inspections were 843,000 (900-1,300) – Thur sales were a woeful 258,000 (100-250), 664,000 MT to China on Fri


US Carryout –   900     mb       (852-940)

Global                 107     mmt     (104-113)

Brazil                   116.5 mmt      (113-117)

Argentina           55     mmt       (53-56)

3) US/CHINA TRADE DEAL – further delay was announced today with the talks being postponed beyond 3/27 – we never thought it would be An easy resolution – and indeed it hasn’t been! Nonetheless, due to Its importance to BOTH parties, a deal will get done in time!

4) US/NORTH KOREA DISAPPOINTMENT – Trump preferred no deal to a bad deal – makes sense!- harmony with NK has never been even sniffed by any previous administration- so our progress will them so far now can’t be considered anything but positive! We don’t feel it will negatively impact our US/China trade talks.

5) JANUARY WEATHER IN EARLY MARCH – has already caused some mild planting delays in the south- should it continue, corn & bean planting will definitely be impacted

6) US DOLLAR – did the grain complex no favors this week soaring to new contract highs – making our exports more expensive on the world mkt

7) USDA BIGGIE – on Friday 3/28, planting intentions & qtly stocks come out –and will have a major impact on grain prices

With the calendar turning to March, mkt focus shifts to spring planting – it’s hard to consider with the record-low-setting climes we’ve had in early March – but warmer temps are forecast already for next week! Despite ample stocks, grain prices are nonetheless on 10 year lows – leaving “no margin for error in 2019”!



May Corn broke down to 3-month lows – off lingering disappointment that no concrete details have been announced from the ongoing US/China trade talks! Talk of China buying 5-8mmt of corn once the deal is done sounds wonderful but the mkt needs more than positive rhetoric to sustain itself! On the “glass-half full” side of the mkt, May Corn was unable to extend the down from Thursday – even with a postponement of trade talks & a negative USDA Report today! This may indicate the contract is “sold out” & and justifiably concerned about upcoming planting weather!!

1) EXPORTS – Mon inspections were 751,278 (750-950) & Thur sales were 1,249 (700-1,100), 100,500 MT to Columbia on Mon


US Stocks –     1835 mb (1685-1835)

Global            308.5 mmt (306-312)

Brazil               94.5 mmt   (93-96)

Argentina       46 mmt       (44-47)

3) DEVELOPING A VERY HEALTHY SHORT OPEN INTEREST – at last count -22,493 contracts – could play a major role in mkt action if we develop any “hiccups” during planting!

4) STOCKS RELATIVELY TIGHT – even though the mkt action doesn’t reflect it, corn stocks are not plentiful like beans – so any production glitch anywhere in the world -will energize some fierce rallies from these 10-year low price levels!

There’s an old commodity axiom “ the mkt looks so bad it’s good” – that could be where we’re at in May corn – “shorting” the mkt really feels like it’s “coming late to the party” – on the other hand, the combination of historically low prices and any weather snafus would certain spark “robust buying”!!


May Wht continued its near free-fall this week with an 18 cent decline (456-438). The major issue continues to be the world cash mkt which is under the US Wht Price! Even good news doesn’t seem to be able to stop the down-draft – for instance, Thursday’s export sales came in at 826,000 – well above the estimates (200-500) & still the mkt plummeted 12 cents! But there was a slight respite Friday when US stocks 1,055 (1010-1050) & global stocks 270 (266-270) were both higher than pre-report guesses but May Wht was still able to eke out a steady close!!


 Try as they might, they can’t kill the Golden Goose! This past Monday, Apl cat key-reversed down – going from higher on the day to a new 2-wk low! However, even after the 12 dollar rally since last fall, the mkt hung tough – supported by ongoing winter storms & solid demand – enabling it to forge a higher weekly close! Until the slaughter weights and/or weekly kills start to edge up, the mkt should remain firm! A cattle-on-feed report was issued today at 2pm – reflecting higher placements 95 (92.6) than expected – we’ll see how the mkt handles this on Monday!!


Wow! If there was any doubt about the idea that hogs had finally bottomed, it was quickly dispensed with a limit-up close today – even after the mkt had already rallied $5.00 from the lows (53-58)! Many thought we’d need a trade resolution for this kind of mkt action but we didn’t. The extreme disparity between pork & beef at the retail counter, a firm cash mkt, the highest pork exports in a year and additional flare-ups Of ASF (Asian Swine Fever) were enough to catalyze the rally!!



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