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Neutral numbers from March WASDE

Neutral numbers from March WASDE

Coronavirus is affecting commodity markets, an analyst said

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) March World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report came and went without much movement.

U.S. corn, soybean and wheat supply and use projections for 2019-20 remained unchanged from February.

And from a price standpoint, the wheat projected season-average farm price stayed the same as February’s at US$4.55 per bushel. The price for soybeans was down five cents to US$8.70 per bushel and the season-average price for corn fell by a nickel to US$3.80 per bushel.

A global health situation is causing the standstill.

“The March WASDE was a dud,” said Moe Agostino, chief commodity strategist with Risk Management. The USDA is buying more time to get through the coronavirus impact.”

Markets could see movement from the quarterly Grain Stocks report, which the USDA is due to release on March 31, he said.

One notable small change was in South American soybean production.

The USDA projected a one-million-ton increase for Argentina (up to 54 million tons) and for Brazil, bringing that country’s soybean production to about 126 million tons.

For producers looking at futures prices, Agostino suggests being patient.

“With the end of March and the quarterly Grain Stocks report coming, we (won’t) likely see (any) changes until then,” he said.

The April WASDE report will be released April 9.

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