March 2018 Oats Prices Recap

It was an ugly month for oats prices if you’re only looking at contracts out of Chicago.

Whipsawing in wheat prices in March and concerns about demand weighed on prices on the big board. However, farmers in Western Canada were largely isolated from the damage.

Here’s a breakdown of the action on the futures contracts that we’re watching this month:

  • May 2018: -16.8% or -45.3¢ to $2.250 USD / bushel
  • July 2018: -14.3% or -39.0¢ to $2.338 USD / bushel
  • Dec 2018: -5.6% or -15.0¢ to $2.508 USD / bushel

And this quarter:

  • May 2018: -8.9% or -22.0¢ USD / bushel
  • July 2018: -8.0% or -20.2¢ USD / bushel
  • Dec 2018: -2.8% or -7.2¢ USD / bushel

This week, the USDA reported that U.S. oats acreage will come in around 2.72 million acres. That number was 128,000 acres higher than last year. It’s been a tough time for U.S. oats farmers given the lack of liquidity in the market.

This month we discussed potential price boosters in the oats market, as well as the impact of the Indian tariff on oats acreage moving forward. Specifically, we looked at:

Be sure to sign up for your free 3-week trial at GrainCents as this month could be the most impactful for how and when you price your oats for the rest of 2017/18 old crop supply, as well as a significant portion of your 2018/19 supply.

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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