May 2018 concluded with a selloff of soybean prices and left contracts largely where the began on the first day of the month. Before we break down what happened in the markets in May, let’s take a look at how soybean prices performed over the past 31 days:
- May 2018: -0.7% or -7¢ to $10.378 USD / bushel
- July 2018: -0.7% or -7¢ to $10.485 USD / bushel
- Nov 2018: -0.3% or -3¢ to $10.448 USD / bushel
- Jan 2019: -0.1% or -1.3¢ to $10.485 USD / bushel
- Mar 2019: -1.3% or -13.3¢ to $10.325 USD / bushel
Once again, soybean prices this month were dominated by talk about trade. At the onset of the month, markets were convinced that the Trump administration was heading toward a full-scale trade war with China. But two weeks ago, the two countries declared that no trade war would transpire…
Then, President Trump apparently forgot what negotiators had assured. This week, soybean prices have slumped after the U.S. slapped China with 25% tariffs on roughly $50 billion in goods. Markets are also bearish after the U.S. hit Canada, Mexico, and the European Union with tariffs on steel and aluminum.
But that’s not the only story we’ve covered for GrainCents readers. This month, for example, we focused our attention on:
- Changes in Chinese demand for food-grade soybeans;
- The impact of White House trade policy on the grain markets moving forward;
- The potential size of the 2018/19 US soybean crop;
- How U.S. crush margins have changed due to trade war fears; and
- What’s impacting soybean prices in Argentina & why they bought American soybeans.
Traders have been taking profits off the table. Soybean prices would likely be lower if it weren’t for ongoing labor and transportation problems down in Brazil and Argentina. We’ll be diving deeper into that story and other factors this weekend in our GrainCents Digest.
Be sure to sign up for a free 3-week trial at GrainCents as this month could be the most impactful for how and when you price your soybeans for the rest of 2017/18 old crop supply, as well as a significant portion of your 2018/19 new crop production.