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-Brazilian soybean planting catches up to average
-South American rain outlook favorable
-CFTC data shows funds with largest soybean net long since June/SBO since Nov 2017
-Russian wheat export pace remains tepid
-USDA pork export sales reporting questioned

 Nationwide Brazilian soybean planting is 21% complete according to AgRural, catching up to the 5-year average after early delays, but still well below last year’s record-fast 34% pace at this time. Planting in Parana, though, at 33% complete is the slowest in 8 years, they said.

 Friday’s CFTC data showed funds’ rising optimism in the ag space amid improved Chinese demand expectations, with net buying in soybeans in futures/options combined for the week ended 10/15/19 of 42.5k contracts, putting their net long at 49.0k contracts, still small in the big picture, but their largest long since early June 2018. Funds were net buyers of 24.5k contracts in corn to reduce their net short to 66.1k contracts, and were net buyers of 8.6k contracts in CBOT wheat, now net short just 10.6k contracts. Funds were net buyers of 13.7k SBO, increasing their net long to 43.5k contracts, the highest since November 2017, and were net buyers of 7.7k SBM, reducing their net short to 25.1k. Funds were net buyers of 11.7k KCBT wheat (net short 23.4k) and 2.2k MPLS wheat (net short 9.6k).

 The Solvent Extractors’ Association of India, their national veg oil trade body, informally asked the country’s palm oil importers to avoid making any purchases of Malaysian palm oil until the government provides clarity on their guidelines/restrictions on purchases moving forward amid the Kashmir situation skirmish.

 SovEcon solidly lowered their estimate of Russian wheat exports in October to 3.3 MMT from 3.6 MMT previously and compares to 4.1 MMT exported in September and 4.45 MMT last year October. July-Oct marketing year to date exports, based on the new estimate, of 15.1 MMT compares to 17.5 MMT last year.

 The USDA’s reporting of pork export sales data has been called into question of late as the focus on Chinese demand intensifies. Grain related sales data has always been considered structurally sound and accurate, but some have questioned the completeness and accuracy of pork data. USDA didn’t help the cause in an announcement on Friday stating that “a significant quantity” of the 292k tonnes in pork sales reported on Thursday might have been sold in previous weeks and just being accounted for in last week’s report/data. The weekly pork sales were easily the largest-ever reported since USDA began providing pork data in 2013. Of the 292k tonnes in total sales, 132k went to Mexico, which traders highly questioned following the previous week’s 2.7k tonnes in sales, while 94k tonnes went to China.

 Algeria tendered for an unspecified amount of wheat for Dec 1-15 and Dec 16-31 shipment periods, with offers due by tomorrow. In their previous tender, Algeria bought 600k tonnes of wheat for November shipment.

 Saudi Arabia bought 605k tonnes of wheat following their latest tender, at an average price of $242.51/tonne c&f and was for FebMarch arrival. Their previous purchase in early September of 780k tonnes saw an average price of $217.7/tonne c&f.

Weather Over the next 24 hours, rains of .40-1” are expected for around 65-75% of the corn belt east of the MS River, while additional totals of 1- 2” will fall in the west for much of MN, as well as far northern IA after .50-1” amounts already fell in much of IA and MO. Totals in the rest of IA and most of MO look to be under .30”. Conditions will then quiet down for the rest of the week and most of the weekend. The models than become strongly separated in their ideas, with the European model indicates a system to bring rains of .50-1” to most of IL, IN, MI and OH by Sunday and then another system to bring rains to most of MN, IA and MO by the middle of next week. Very early estimates on amounts are running in the .50-1” range with that activity. The GFS sees the mainly dry weather to hang on through the 6-10 day period. The European model is favored at this time. Temps will run below average across the region through most of the next 10 days, with some average readings occurring in the far east.

A favorable South American outlook is in place with rains of .50-1.5”+ expected for most Brazilian growing areas the next 5 days. Argentina looks to see rains of .25-.75” with coverage of around 75%. The 6-10 day period sees rains of .50-1.5”+ in most of Argentine and Brazilian growing regions. Temps will be running mostly below average for Argentina and average in Brazil in the next 10 days.

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