GrainCents 2018 Soybean Prices, Market Outlook

As we discussed last week in the FarmLead 2017 soybean market review, the world was dealing with some big crops from both the United States and Brazil.

In 2018, the trend will likely continue as soybeans will likely dethrone corn as the most important cash crop in the United States.

Increasingly, farmers are turning away from corn acreage to plant soybeans and pay the bills. US soybean acreage is poised to hit 90.2 million acres in the year ahead. Is it possible to see US production top 2017/18’s 4.425 billion bushel crop (120.44 MMT) and the average yield of 49.5 per acre, despite the tougher growing conditions?

The primary concern moving forward, however, is whether supply outpaces annual demand.

So where will soybean prices be heading?

That’s the purpose of this assessment of the 2018 soybean market. In the following report, we breakdown the major bullish and bearish factors that will drive soybean prices in the year ahead.

The list of factors includes:

• Chinese soybean demand from the United States and rival export markets
• Global macroeconomic conditions and rising geopolitical instability;
• International crush demand for cooking oils and biofuels
• Weather volatility and the crop sizes in Brazil and Argentina
• When you should be selling soybeans in 2018 (and why!).

GrainCents Soybeans Subscriber Benefits

Our current soybean factors page on GrainCents features nearly a dozen primary supply and demand factors. However, this report expands on those factors to cover a number typically not explore by mainstream analysts, media outlets, or USDA economists. We’ve expanded this coverage to help our readers get a more complete picture of where prices are heading and when to sell their soybeans.

You can easily read how we view and make sense of the grain markets here.

GrainCents soybean readers also see our sales position for 2017/18 old crop and 2018/19 new crop.

Let’s dig into the details.

When Should You Sell Soybeans and At What Price?

Before digging deeper, make sure to set up your FarmLead Price Discovery for soybeans to make sure you’re aware of what cash soybean prices are doing around you.

Moving on, in 2017, we saw the best opportunities to sell soybeans in January, March, June, and July. But this is just from a calendar perspective.

From a crop year perspective, we were selling 2017/18 crop all the way back in…

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canola-post-new-offer

2018 Macroeconomic Outlook

Soybean prices enter 2018 on the downswing after a robust U.S. harvest.

Around the globe, economic growth will likely….

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La Nina’s Impact on South America

In conversations with meteorologists and having read everything I can by agricultural analysts around the globe, the sentiment on La Nina is as follows:

We can anticipate a significant…

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Increased Chinese Import Demand

Chinese import demand will reach a staggering 97 million metric tonnes this year, according to the USDA.

That’s a…

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 Rising Crush and Biodiesel Demand

The USDA forecasts that 1.94 billion bushels will be used for the annual soybean crush.

Rising biodiesel demand will…

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Brazilian Export Competition

The world is awash in soybeans. The U.S. is expected to hit a fifth straight year of new record exports of soybeans.

However, the optimism this year isn’t so palpable as 2018 begins.

Why did the USDA slash…

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Chinese Production and Stocks

China is the world’s largest importer and the fourth-largest producer of soybeans.

Given that the country already has significant…

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grain-prices-markets-insights-graincents

Rising Global Acreage Expectations

Around the globe, 2017/18 soybean harvested acres will increase by 5.1% to 312.5 million acres, according to projections from the USDA.

Where it’s coming from though is more surprising.

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Geopolitical Events

The international equity and commodity markets withstood a string of geopolitical threats throughout 2017.

This year, in 2018, will also feature a lot of….

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U.S. Trade Policy

President Donald Trump road into the White House in 2016 with a strong protectionist message that has raised concerns among global free-trade advocates.

He shook his finger at…

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Chinese Quality Protocols

The Chinese government has asked, and the U.S. government responded.

The USDA has set a…

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Yield Volatility and Soybean Production Forecasts

In the months ahead, farmers will face a barrage of predictions, projections, prognostications, forecasts, bold calls, and educated guesses.

Call them what you want, but….

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About the Author
Garrett Baldwin

Garrett Baldwin is a content strategist and editor at FarmLead. He covers the global grain markets and public policy issues related to the agricultural industry. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. He also holds a Master’s Degree in Economic Policy from The Johns Hopkins University, an MS in Agricultural Economics from Purdue University, and an MBA in Finance from Indiana University.

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