United States delegates are meeting with Chinese counterparts this week, in an effort to resolve trade tensions. A market analyst says a glimmer of hope appears amid these discussions.
On Friday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) chose to “indefinitely postpone” the January Supply and Demand, Quarterly Grain Stocks, Crop Production and Winter Wheat Seedings reports until funding is restored.
Brian Grossman, market strategist for Zaner Ag Hedge, claims the January Supply and Demand report is “arguably one of the most important reports of the year.” Grossman shares the impact this decision has had on United States grain markets.
“With all of those reports being delayed indefinitely until funding returns, (it’s) leaving the market looking for any kind of news to trade off of, whether it be a weather report or rumor about a sale, basically anything at this point. News is what the market is desperately looking for,” Grossman said.
Grain markets received some positive news, as United States and Chinese officials began to convene in Beijing. However, the Board of Trade remained quiet at midday Monday
“A very quiet day, although we’ve had a fair amount of news and a lot of activity going on,” Grossman said. “Without the government, nothing is officially confirmed. But what we’re hearing is China bought at least three cargoes of U.S. soybeans today, which is about 180,000 metric tonnes. There is talk that instead of three, it was actually as high as 15. But like I said, the market only up 2 ¼ cents, so probably waiting for a little clearer confirmation on that.”
Weekly export inspections data also reaffirmed China’s interest in United States product.
“The two numbers I look for immediately stuck out,” Grossman said. “We had 74,000 metric tonnes of beans going to Mainland China and 83,000 metric tonnes of soybeans going to Argentina. Activity nonetheless, but we’ll see how it plays out. The good thing about inspections is these are actual shipments – they’re on the boat and on the way.”