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Neutral exports in latest USDA report

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Corn and soybean exports were within the range of estimates on the latest U.S. Export Sales Report released by the USDA Thursday morning.

Data for the week ending March 25th showed corn exports at 857,300 metric tons, soybeans sales at 236,800 metric tons, and wheat at 331,100 metric tons. Allendale commodity broker Greg McBride says it was a mostly neutral report overall.

“We were inside the range of estimates for corn, beans, wheat and bean meal,” McBride said. “Bean oil came in just under the expectations. Nothing to really get too excited about this week. We know at this time of the year on the soy side of things that we typically trail off a little bit because of South American bushels coming on-line. Corn exports were still very strong even though they were inside the range of estimates at 857,300 tons. That’s a very solid week and we continue to look good on the demand front for old crop corn.”

This week’s corn sales were much lower than the 4.626 million metric tons reported last week, however, McBride says that was due to some increased purchasing from China.

“Definitely an anomaly there (last week) with the big purchases China had made going into that meeting in Alaska,” McBride said. “I think that was something we can look at from time to time and see those types of purchases, whether it’s corn or soybeans, as long as they are under that Phase One Trade Agreement.”

McBride advises producers to not get too concerned with the bearish soybean oil sales on this week’s report, which were only 4,100 metric tons – down 69 percent from last week and 62 percent from the prior four-week average.

“We continue to crush at a very fast pace,” he said. “That will be something that we should continue to see oil get sold and exported. We’ve already seen over the last few weeks and months that vegetable oils are becoming another hot commodity again. As you continue to talk about biodiesel here in the United States, that’s definitely going to be something that we’ll continue to see uses for that bean oil here domestically as well.”

The next U.S. Export Sales Report will be released on Thursday, April 8th.