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-First USDA corn crop condition ratings expected this afternoon
-USDA WASDE/Crop Production report tomorrow - trade estimates included
-Attache sees higher Russian wheat crop/exports than USDA
-Brazilian safrinha corn harvest underway
-Funds heavy corn buyers again in latest CFTC data
-Longer-term weather outlook remains improved, but corn acreage uncertainty remains massive
 
Grain markets were lower overnight as the longer-term weather outlook is improving, but obviously a massive amount of uncertainty on corn acres, in particular, remains. Tomorrow’s USDA WASDE report is very likely to reflect their expectation of lower corn acres and yields from last month’s report, but the key numbers won’t come until the June 28 Acreage report as it will reflect an actual survey of farmers’ planted acreage numbers vs tomorrow’s USDA subjective revision/ideas. Keep in mind, over the last 25 years, USDA has never lowered their corn planted acreage assumption in the June WASDE report by more than 2 million acres, with the largest downward yield revision in the June report being 5.9 bushels/acre. Clearly there appears to be more than ample support for USDA to lower their acreage assumption by more than 2 million acres tomorrow, with a move to below trend yield ideas likely, as well. On the flip side, USDA has never raised soybean planted area ideas in the June WASDE report by more than 1.5 million acres, so historical revisions for a June report clearly appear possible/likely. Our pre-report commentary can be found on Market Insights at https://portal.rjobrien.com/MarketInsights/Blog/Read/36115, while a summary of the average trade estimates is on the page 3.
 
 Ideas on corn planting progress in this afternoon’s Crop Progress report appear to be mostly in the 80-85% range and 55-60% for soybeans. USDA will be issuing their first look at U.S. corn crop conditions this afternoon, as well, with most ideas appearing to be around 60-63% good/excellent, while last year’s initial rating was a historically high 79% g/e. Over the last 10 years, the lowest initial rating of the season was 63% g/e, occurring three times (2008, 2011 and 2013). The lowest initial rating since USDA provided U.S.-wide assessments in 1986 was 43% g/e in 2002, while 51% g/e initial ratings were reported in 1990, 1993 and 1996.
 Good news over the weekend as an agreement between the U.S. and Mexico on border issues looks to avert the imposition of tariffs on Mexican products, but the U.S./China trade war appears to continue dragging on indefinitely.
 The USDA ag attaché in Russia sees their 2019/20 wheat crop at 79.0 MMT, above the USDA’s official estimate of 77.0 MMT and up solidly from last year’s 71.7 MMT. Accordingly, the attaché looks for an increase in Russian wheat exports in the coming marketing year to 37.5 MMT from 34.5 MMT for 2018/19, which we would note the attaché’s old crop export assumption is well below USDA’s 37.0 MMT estimate. USDA is currently estimating 2019/20, new crop, exports at 36.0 MMT.
 Friday afternoon’s CFTC Disaggregated COT data for futures/options combined for the week ended 6/04/19 showed funds heavy buyers in corn again of 108k contracts, returning to the net long side of the market (87k contracts) for the first time since early February. Funds were net buyers across the grain complex for the week, with 36.6k in soybeans (net short 93.4k), 22.5k SBM (net long 2.2k), 15.4k KCBT wheat (net short 24.1k), 10.4k CBOT wheat (net short 13.3k), 6.4k SBO (net short 55.8k) and 4.4k MPLS wheat (net sort 7.9k).
 China imported 7.36 MMT of soybeans in May, according to preliminary Customs data, vs 9.69 MMT last year May and compared to 7.64 MMT in April. Oct-May total soybean imports of 49.8 MMT are down 10.5 MMT from last year for the same period.
 AgRural estimates Brazil’s safrinha corn crop in the key center-south growing region is 4.6% harvested vs 1.9% last year and 2.5% average.
Weather
Close to average rainfall in the next 10 days will allow planted fields to develop favorably, but will continue to provide interruptions in fieldwork, just not to the extent that has been seen the past 6-8 weeks. Rains will be finishing up in the east today with additional totals in the .30-1” in far eastern MI and the eastern 2/3rd of OH. Things will be mainly dry in the rest of the region in the next 24 hours. By later Tuesday, rains will begin to spread into the NW Midwest. Those rains will then work across mainly the rest of the Midwest for Wed-Thur. Totals north of a line from around St Louis to Detroit look to be in the .40-1” range with some isolated heavier totals. Totals in the rest of the region look to be generally under .35”. Most of Friday looks to be mainly dry, with the next system to impact the region later Friday into the weekend and Monday. The models are now in pretty good agreement with their ideas on this system for .40-1” in most areas, with some isolated heavier amounts as well. The best coverage and greatest amounts are currently indicated to favor MO, IL, IN and OH. Temps will be running average to below average across the region in the next 10 days. The 11-16 day period shows more of the same with precip across the Southern Plains and most of the Midwest close to average, while precip in the N. Plains would run below average. Temps would continue to run below average in the S. Plains and most of the Midwest, with average to above average temps in the northern Plains. 

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