First Thing Today Audio | July 16, 2021

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Corn futures are 3 to 4 cents higher to start the day, with soybeans up 12 to 15 cents. Spring wheat futures have shot 17 to 19 cents higher, with the September contract taking out the $9.00 mark and hitting a new contract high of $9.13. Winter wheat futures are 12 to 14 cents higher. The greenback and crude oil futures are slightly higher.

Harsh weather is likely for the Northern Plains and southern Canadian Prairies over the next 10 days to two weeks for both crops and livestock. Extreme heat is likely July 18-24 and rain is desperately needed.

Drought and an untimely frost have sliced Brazil’s safrinha corn crop, resulting in a number of companies exiting their contracts on washout clauses. Some traders cited by Reuters say this could lead to the biggest wave of export cancellations for Brazil in five years.

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Leader Xi Jinping recently emphasized the problem of food security, saying that ensuring grain security should be a “national security” concern.

The IRS and Treasury said it sent payments for almost 60 million children on Thursday, totaling $15 billion. The funds would supplement what some families lost after a number of states cut off topped up unemployment benefits.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen cautioned Thursday that prices could continue to rise for several more months, though she expects the recent startling inflation run to ease over time. In a CNBC interview, Yellen added that she worries about the problems inflation could pose for lower-income families looking to buy homes at a time when real estate values are surging.

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced he will schedule a vote on Wednesday to proceed to the legislative vehicle that lawmakers hope to use to pass the bipartisan infrastructure package.

Germany confirms its first cases of African swine fever (ASF) in farm pigs. The virus was confirmed in pigs on two farms in the eastern state of Brandenburg, which borders Poland where ASF is widespread.

August live cattle futures are trading in line with this week’s cash action that has ranged from $119 in Texas to $126 in Iowa, with the bulk of action occurring at levels steady with last week’s trade. Weekly beef export sales failed to impress.

Pork production is running near its lowest levels of the year, but seasonals signal production will pick up late summer heading into fall. Cash hog bids dropped a national average of $3.03 yesterday after solid gains the two days prior.



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