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Ag markets generally diverged Friday

Corn traders may have squared positions before the weekend. After exhibiting considerable strength over the previous week, corn futures declined Thursday and continued sliding today. There was little fresh news, and the financial markets essentially stalled. Thus, today’s corn slippage probably resulted traders and funds squaring positions before the weekend and next Tuesday’s important USDA reports. May corn futures slipped 0.25 cent to $3.91/bushel at Friday’s CBOT settlement, while December stalled at $4.1475.

Markets

Natural gas prices hold steady

Outside of New England, prices at most locations remain flat with warmer temperatures. Natural gas prices at most trading locations remained at or near their report week start point, Wednesday to Wednesday, as seasonal temperatures held through the week. With the exception of New England, most locations stayed within 10¢ of their price last Wednesday through the report week. The Henry Hub spot price last Wednesday was $2.77/MMBtu and gained 5¢ through Friday, before dropping to end the week at $2.74/MMBtu.

News

USDA extends ARC and PLC deadlines

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack provided farm owners and producers one additional week, until April 7, 2015, to choose between Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC), the safety-net programs established by the 2014 Farm Bill. The final day to update yield history or reallocate base acres also will be April 7, 2015.

Markets

Ag markets were decidedly mixed at midsession Friday

Corn traders may be squaring positions before the weekend. After exhibiting considerable strength over the previous week, corn futures declined Thursday and have continued sliding today. There’s little fresh news, and the financial markets have essentially stalled. Thus, we suspect today’s corn slippage is the result of traders and funds squaring positions before the weekend and next Tuesday’s important USDA reports. May corn futures slipped 1.5 cents to $3.8975/bushel late Friday morning, while December lost 1.25 to $4.135.

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