Wittal: Delayed seeding spurs offers for feed

Our online grain markets columnist Brian Wittal welcomes feedback and information on market conditions in your area, such as current offering prices, basis levels, trucking premiums and special crops contracts. Contact Brian today.

May 14 — Overnight trade showed grains pulling back somewhat due to a further slide in the financial markets, but as the day trading began, financial markets turned around and grains followed to end up closing higher overall for the day.

Positive export numbers out of the U.S. for beans and corn, and continued weather delays for seeding, helped to push markets higher today. Reports out of Argentina today reduced their estimated crop to 32 million tonnes, down from 34 million, which also helped support oilseeds.

The Dow Jones closed up 46 points today at 8,331. The Canadian dollar was up US0.32 cents today to close at US85.49 cents.

Crude oil finished up 60 cents, closing at US$58.62 per barrel for the day.

Corn finished up one to three cents per bushel today, while beans finished up eight to 20 cents and wheat finished up two to 13 cents on the various U.S. exchanges today.

Canola is up $5 to $8 per tonne for the day and barley is unchanged, closing at $141.90 per tonne.

There have been some signs of activity in the feed grain markets, as delayed seeding is forcing some companies and feeders to look for stocks. Situations are very localized, so if you have feed wheat or barley to sell before fall, you will want to check around and see who is offering what. Feed wheat was being offered at $4.70 delivered in central Alberta and barley at $3.15, picked up on farm next week in central Alberta.

A long weekend weather market is before us and this could prove to be really interesting. If forecasts for rain and snow are true, then seeding delays will help support the markets into next week. If weather co-operates and seeding progresses, we could see a pullback in the markets next week.

It will be interesting to see how the trade acts tomorrow. Will they take profits and run before the long weekend, or will they stick in there believing the forecasts and hope for a further weather rally next week?

Being a trader going into a long weekend weather market is like playing chicken with a train. Either way, the train is gonna win and if you stop to think about it rationally you wonder, what the heck are you doing this for? It must be for the thrill of it all, I guess.

Guarantee forms

An important reminder from the Canadian Wheat Board, as printed on its website:

Continuing Personal Guarantee form: Farmers who appear together on a delivery permit are each liable for all debts and obligations attributable to the delivery permit from CWB delivery contracts and Producer Payment Options (PPOs). The Continuing Personal Guarantee form ensures farmers are aware of this pre-existing responsibility. The Continuing Personal Guarantee relates specifically to delivery contracts and PPOs, and is not related to the cash advance program. Actual producers and landlords who currently appear on a delivery permit as a joint operation, trade name or partnership must complete and return the form by May 1, 2009 to be eligible to sign up a PPO. If you are adding a new landlord that is a joint operation, trade name or partnership, a CWB identification number will be issued to the landlord once the guarantee has been received by the CWB. For further details or to fill out the forms please go to the CWB’s website under the “Farmers” tab, or call 1-800-275-4292 and talk to a CWB Business Services Rep.

The CWB is still urging producers to deliver their wheat as soon as possible and has also put on a 50 per cent delivery call for all wheats (excluding durum) on the C Series contract. Signup deadline for the C Series is the end of May so make sure you have all the tonnes you want to haul on a contract before then.

That’s all for today. — Brian

— Brian Wittal has spent over 27 years in the grain industry, including as an elevator manager and producer services representative for Alberta Wheat Pool, a regional sales manager for AgPro Grain and farm business representative for the Canadian Wheat Board, where he helped design some of the new pricing programs. He also operates his own company providing marketing and risk management advice for Prairie grain producers. Brian’s daily commentaries focus on how domestic and world market conditions affect you directly as grain producers.

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Brian Wittal

Brian Wittal has 30 years of grain industry experience and currently offers market planning and marketing advice to farmers through his company Pro Com Marketing Ltd.

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