About The Author

Jack Scoville

Jack Scoville is an often quoted market analyst in the grain and soft commodities sectors. You will find his commentary throughout the Reuters, Wall Street Journal, Dow Jones, Bloomberg, and Barron's publications. Contact Mr. Scoville at (312) 264-4322

DJ USDA Report: Recap for U.S. Agriculture Supply, Demand
The following table of analysts’ estimates is provided as a service to The Wall Street Journal subscribers in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s monthly supply-and-demand report scheduled for release at noon ET on Friday.
U. S. Stockpiles (millions)
2023-24
Average Range USDA Nov.
Corn 2,157 2,106-2,293 2,156
Soybeans 242 215-259 245
Wheat 684 670-706 684
****
World Stockpiles (million metric tons)
2022-23
Average Range USDA Nov
Corn 299.2 299.0-299.6 299.2
Soybeans 100.3 100.0-100.4 100.3
Wheat 269.6 269.3-270.0 269.6
2023-24
Average Range USDA Nov
Corn 313.0 310.0-315.0 315.0
Soybeans 112.9 110.5-116.8 114.5
Wheat 258.8 257.9-260.2 258.7

DJ Global Food Prices Held Steady in November, Driving Further Inflation Concerns — Update
By Yusuf Khan
Global food prices held steady in November after lower prices for grains and meats were offset by rising costs for sugar, vegetable oil and dairy products, the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization said Friday.
The UN FAO’s food price index, which tracks global prices for a basket of staple foods, averaged 120.4 points in November, unchanged from October’s revised level.
The lack of a price fall could add worry for policymakers trying to fight persistently high inflation rates, with elevated food costs adding pressure on consumers. However, food prices are still 11% lower than they were a year ago.
Vegetable oil prices rose 3.4% in November compared with the prior month, the FAO said. Palm oil prices in particular rose 6%, with demand from importing countries rising. Dairy prices were also 2.2% higher, with demand for skimmed milk powder and butter in Northeast Asia pushing up prices.
Sugar prices were also up 1.4%, putting prices more than 41% higher year on year. Supply is currently being threatened by severe dry weather conditions in Thailand and India–two leading sugar export countries.
That said, prices for grains fell 3% in the month, led by a fall in coarse grain prices including corn. The FAO said wheat prices also dropped 2.4%, however futures have been rising in recent days on reports of higher demand from China. Chicago futures are up nearly 18% this quarter with prices trading at $6.39 a bushel.
Meat prices meanwhile slipped 0.4%, with prices 2.4% lower than where they were a year ago.
The FAO added that it is now forecasting record grain production this year at 2.823 billion tons, roughly 10 million tons higher than the previous record set in 2021. Most of this gain has been led by bumper wheat crops in Russia and corn in the U.S.

DJ CBOT Delivery Intentions: Totals – Dec 8
Source: CME Group
Contract Quantity Next Trade
Commodity Month Delivery Day Assigned Today Date Available
CORN December Dec 11, 2023 18 Dec 01, 2023
KC HRW WHEAT December Dec 11, 2023 11 Nov 28, 2023
WHEAT December Dec 11, 2023 8 Dec 05, 2023

WHEAT
General Comments: Wheat markets were higher and trends are still up on news of significant purchases of US Wheat by China over the weekend. He WASDE reports will be released later today and some suggest that USDAA will raise export demand and cut ending stocks estimates. Costs for transport of Ukraine Wheat are high and this has hurt any sales. Russia is still exporting and offering Wheat into the world market and is reporting that the crop is larger than originally thought. Ukraine and the EU countries are offering as well and are getting new business. Demand has been poor for US Wheat as Russia production looks strong, but exports are starting to increase. Argentine conditions are reported to be good after a very dry start but showers and rains in recent weeks. It has been too wet in southern Brazil and much of the Wheat grown there is expected to be feed grade instead of milling grade.
Overnight News: The southern Great Plains should get scattered showers. Temperatures should be above normal. Northern areas should see scattered showers. Temperatures will average above normal. The Canadian Prairies should see scattered showers. Temperatures should average above normal. China bought 110,000 tons of US SRW Wheat.
Chart Analysis: Trends in Chicago are up with objectives of 657 March. Support is at 622, 609 and 605 March, with resistance at 653, 670, and 680 March. Trends in Kansas City are mixed. Support is at 633, 622, and 617 March, with resistance at 670, 677, and 687 \March. Trends in Minneapolis are mixed. Support is at 719, 716, and 698 March, and resistance is at 748, 753, and 768 March.

RICE
General Comments: Rice closed a little higher on some short covering tied to good export demand and demand ideas in general. Farmers appear quiet in the market and basis levels are reported to be steady. Short term trends remain down in this market. The weekly charts show that a big gap was closed with the price action last week since the gap was filled. Demand reports have been solid to strong for the last couple of weeks and have featured traditional buyers in Latin America and Asia ad some nontraditional buyers as well. The weekly export sales report showed very strong demand from Latin America. The daily and weekly chart trends are down.
Overnight News: The Delta should get isolated showers, mostly near the Gulf coast. Temperatures should be above normal.
Chart Analysis: Trends are mixed. Support is at 1734, 1680, and 1667 January and resistance is at 1729, 1746, and 1757 January.

CORN AND OATS
General Comments: Corn closed higher as export demand was better than expected by traders. Oats were lower. Ideas of weak demand are keeping prices low over all, but the weekly export sales reports have shown good demand for the last several weeks. The market feels that there is more than enough Corn for any demand and are not buying futures despite the improve demand. It is still hot and dry in central and northern Brazil and in Argentina although some beneficial rains have been reported in Argentina and in central and northern Brazil. Southern Brazil is still much too wet. There was some beneficial rains reported in central and northern areas last weekend and more showers and rains are possible this week.
Overnight News: Unknown destinations bought 165,000 tons of US Corn.
Chart Analysis: Trends in Corn are mixed. Support is at 477, 471, and 468 March, and resistance is at 489, 493, and 496 March. Trends in Oats are mixed to down with no objectives. Support is at 356, 351, and 342 March, and resistance is at 382, 398, and 403 March.

SOYBEANS
General Comments: Soybeans closed higher on strong weekly export sales and the products closed lower on more reports of improved rains for central and northern Brazil this week although still too much rain was reported for southern Brazil. There are some forecasts for scattered showers and rains this week in central and northern Brazil and still very wet conditions in the south. Soybeans appears to be starting a new leg down on the charts. The weekly export sales report for Soybeans was not strong after the record sales report the previous week but sales to China continue. The trade remains concerned about the weather forecasts for South America. Brazil remains mostly hot and dry in northern areas and too wet in southern areas. Argentina crops are reported o be in good condition with enough moisture. These weather trends are expected to continue after next week.
Overnight News:
Chart Analysis: Trends in Soybeans are mixed. Support is at 1292, 1270, and 1258 January, and resistance is at 1324, 1339, and 1352 January. Trends in Soybean Meal are mixed to down with objectives of 399.00 January. Support is at 398.00, 388.00, and 387.00 January, and resistance is at 422.00, 425.00, and 431.00 January. Trends in Soybean Oil are mixed. Support is at 4980, 4900, and 4820 January, with resistance at 5200, 5360, and 5420 January.

CANOLA AND PALM OIL
General Comments: Palm Oil was lower today along with weakness in Soybean Oil and on ideas of weaker demand for Palm Oil as the private sources reported improved demand for the month so far. Production was high in the MPOB reports but is expected to drop seasonally in future reports. Trends are sideways on the daily charts and are sideways on the weekly charts. Canola closed higher yesterday with Chicago Soybeans and on the weather in Brazil. Current forecasts call for very wet weather in southern Brazil and wetter weather in central and northern areas this week. The Canola crop is harvested and it is in bins, so it will take some price movement to get new farm sales. Trends are down on the daily charts in this market.
Overnight News: China bought 136,000 tons of US Soybeans.
Chart Analysis: Trends in Canola are mixed to down with no objectives. Support is at 648.00, 642.00, and 636.00 January, with resistance at 672.00, 682.00, and 693.00 January. Trends in Palm Oil are down with objectives of 3680 February. Support is at 3720, 3680, and 3640 February, with resistance at 3760, 3860, and 3920 February.

Midwest Weather Forecast Mostly dry. Temperatures should average above normal.

US Gulf Cash Basis

Corn HRW SRW Soybeans Soybean Meal Soybean Oil
Nov

December 48 Mar 150 Mar
124 Dec
56 Jan

January
57 Mar 150 Mar 95 Mar 66 Jan

February
63 Mar 150 Mar 90 Mar 58 Mar

DJ Malaysian PM Cash Market Prices for Palm Oil – December 8
The following are prices for Malaysian palm oil in the cash market at 1000 GMT Friday, supplied by commodity broker Matthes & Porton Bhd.
Prices are quoted in U.S. dollars a metric ton, except for crude palm oil and palm kernel oil, which are in ringgit a ton. Palm kernel oil prices are in ringgit a pikul, a Malaysian measurement equivalent to 60 kilograms.
Refined, bleached and deodorized palm oil, FOB, Malaysian ports
Offer Change Bid Change Traded
Dec 817.50 +05.00 Unquoted – –
Jan/Feb/Mar 827.50 +05.00 Unquoted – –
Apr/May/Jun 837.50 +05.00 Unquoted – –
RBD palm olein, FOB, Malaysian ports
Offer Change Bid Change Traded
Dec 825.00 +05.00 Unquoted – –
Jan/Feb/Mar 835.00 +05.00 Unquoted – –
Apr/May/Jun 845.00 +05.00 Unquoted – –
RBD palm stearin, FOB, Malaysian ports
Offer Change Bid Change Traded
Dec 825.00 +10.00 Unquoted – –
Palm Fatty Acid Distillate, FOB Malaysian ports
Offer Change Bid Change Traded
Dec 730.00 +15.00 Unquoted – –
Crude palm oil, Delivered Basis, South Malaysia
Offer Change Bid Change Traded
Dec 3670.00 +40.00 Unquoted – –
Palm kernel oil, Delivered Basis, South Malaysia
Offer Change Bid Change Traded
Dec 240.00 +04.00 Unquoted – –
($1=MYR4.663)

DJ China Dalian Grain Futures Closing Prices, Volume – Dec 08
Soybean No. 1
Turnover: 111,971 lots, or 5.48 billion yuan
Open High Low Close Prev. Settle Ch. Vol Open
Settle Interest
Jan-24 4,903 4,919 4,887 4,917 4,894 4,902 8 70,336 137,945
Mar-24 4,865 4,876 4,856 4,874 4,870 4,865 -5 30,649 56,312
May-24 4,896 4,898 4,879 4,897 4,886 4,886 0 9,479 24,589
Jul-24 4,876 4,881 4,866 4,881 4,875 4,872 -3 458 6,862
Sep-24 4,864 4,869 4,849 4,863 4,860 4,856 -4 1,011 4,566
Nov-24 4,852 4,854 4,836 4,841 4,843 4,844 1 38 92
Corn
Turnover: 563,549 lots, or 14.01 billion yuan
Open High Low Close Prev. Settle Ch. Vol Open
Settle Interest
Jan-24 2,497 2,500 2,480 2,498 2,493 2,490 -3 265,321 430,526
Mar-24 2,456 2,472 2,452 2,471 2,462 2,462 0 127,468 400,047
May-24 2,499 2,507 2,490 2,505 2,501 2,497 -4 112,175 428,202
Jul-24 2,507 2,510 2,496 2,510 2,507 2,502 -5 53,439 185,143
Sep-24 2,500 2,505 2,491 2,503 2,500 2,497 -3 4,719 41,787
Nov-24 2,479 2,486 2,473 2,486 2,481 2,478 -3 427 1,869
Soymeal
Turnover: 1,446,014 lots, or 52.63 billion yuan
Open High Low Close Prev. Settle Ch. Vol Open
Settle Interest
Dec-23 – – – 3,931 3,931 3,931 0 0 187
Jan-24 3,961 3,981 3,940 3,978 3,922 3,961 39 527,124 653,374
Mar-24 3,831 3,853 3,809 3,841 3,810 3,831 21 103,569 174,821
May-24 3,398 3,425 3,384 3,418 3,384 3,407 23 641,516 1,165,939
Jul-24 3,390 3,403 3,368 3,399 3,373 3,389 16 71,413 485,410
Aug-24 3,450 3,471 3,437 3,467 3,436 3,455 19 21,613 79,944
Sep-24 3,413 3,437 3,402 3,432 3,402 3,422 20 61,827 284,817
Nov-24 3,389 3,405 3,372 3,401 3,383 3,390 7 18,952 41,058
Palm Oil
Turnover: 739,060 lots, or 52.16 billion yuan
Open High Low Close Prev. Settle Ch. Vol Open
Settle Interest
Dec-23 7,050 7,050 7,050 7,050 7,040 7,050 10 61 1,984
Jan-24 6,940 7,104 6,930 7,092 6,858 7,016 158 450,963 222,012
Feb-24 7,014 7,154 7,010 7,146 6,934 7,086 152 22,159 32,705
Mar-24 7,050 7,202 7,050 7,198 6,980 7,132 152 10,753 27,651
Apr-24 7,052 7,202 7,052 7,196 6,988 7,132 144 5,260 15,273
May-24 7,040 7,198 7,040 7,188 6,988 7,126 138 241,254 294,923
Jun-24 7,050 7,170 7,028 7,164 6,958 7,102 144 2,359 7,142
Jul-24 6,998 7,126 6,998 7,112 6,930 7,072 142 145 1,201
Aug-24 6,948 7,092 6,948 7,092 6,910 7,036 126 124 3,525
Sep-24 6,944 7,076 6,938 7,060 6,886 7,022 136 5,896 16,058
Oct-24 6,938 7,046 6,938 7,042 6,900 6,998 98 45 215
Nov-24 6,962 7,038 6,958 7,038 6,888 6,996 108 41 244
Soybean Oil
Turnover: 610,714 lots, or 48.02 billion yuan
Open High Low Close Prev. Settle Ch. Vol Open
Settle Interest
Dec-23 – – – 8,100 8,100 8,100 0 0 72
Jan-24 7,936 8,096 7,924 8,094 7,910 8,022 112 327,529 252,404
Mar-24 7,868 8,000 7,868 7,996 7,832 7,944 112 15,655 51,282
May-24 7,572 7,738 7,572 7,736 7,556 7,668 112 244,532 402,096
Jul-24 7,516 7,658 7,504 7,654 7,482 7,598 116 8,571 142,559
Aug-24 7,520 7,656 7,506 7,648 7,484 7,606 122 2,381 34,521
Sep-24 7,466 7,608 7,454 7,600 7,426 7,546 120 6,987 30,090
Nov-24 7,438 7,596 7,438 7,584 7,412 7,534 122 5,059 15,949
Notes:
1) Unit is Chinese yuan a metric ton;
2) Ch. is day’s settlement minus previous settlement;
3) Volume and open interest are in lots;
4) One lot is equivalent to 10 metric tons.

Questions? Ask Jack Scoville today at 312-264-4322