Looking back to Monday, beans started the week on the wrong foot with a press down to the lowest level witnessed since the end of March, while corn and wheat were basically indifferent to the whole thing. As it turns out, though, corn and wheat are the markets that are struggling at week’s end with beans doing what they can to try and keep the remaining bulls from jumping ship. If we wrapped up trade right now, corn would be down 6-cents, wheat down 13-cents, and beans up 10-cents. For the group as a whole, prices are pretty much at a standstill as we search for something new to provide a possible direction. Chances are, the next opportunity for that to arrive will come on Tuesday when the USDA presents us with the October crop production and supply/demand estimates.
Once again, here are the estimates thus far; Domestic corn production is expected to come through at 14.973 billion bushels from an average yield of 176 bpa. 2022 carryout is pegged at 1.432 billion. In beans, the average estimate for production is 4.415 billion from a yield of 51.1 bpa. Carryout is projected to reach back to 300 million bushels. Wheat carryout is projected to come through at 576 million. Global ending stocks are expected to come through at 298.76 MMT of corn, 100.72 MMT beans, and 280.82 MMT wheat.
While the grain and soy markets here remain quite directionless, they continue to edge higher on the global stage. According to the Food and Agricultural Organization of the UN (FAO), their Food Price Index moved up 1.5 points last month to 130.0. This index is now 32% higher than the same month a year ago and at the highest level now in a decade. The Cereal Price Index was up 2.6 points to 132.5, which is 27.3% above last year, and the vegetable Oil Price Index climbed 2.9 points to 168.6, which is 60% above last year. The Dairy Index is 15.2% higher than last year, the Meat Price Index up 26.3%, and the Sugar Price Index up a whopping 53.5%. Granted, making comparisons to a year ago may say as much about the situation last year, but there is no question, the world has experienced the most significant food inflation spike in more than a decade.