World Perspectives

Assistance Payments as Unpredictable as the Weather

After an approximate five-month delay, Congress has approved a $19 billion disaster bill that would cover in addition to other relief efforts, certain agricultural losses. The House passed the bill 354-58 yesterday (it failed the week before by one vote) and the Senate had passed it by a vote of 85-8 the previous week.    The legislation provides $3.005 billion for crop and livestock losses due to hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, wildfires and snowstorms during 2018 and 2019. Once funds are allocated for California, high Plains livestock, southern poultry and other crops, it is not clear how much will go to the corn sector (a great deal of which will be for corn in storage that was flooded). Note that corn was far cheaper at the ti...

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After a week of rolling, November contracts expired today and liquidation begins in the December contract. Otherwise, the market remains caught in sideways trading, which pushes opportunity into the spread trade. The USDA Export Sales report would ordinarily have influenced the day, but it is p...

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Dec 19 Corn closed at $3.7575/bushel, up $0.005 from yesterday's close.  Dec 19 Wheat closed at $5.0775/bushel, down $0.0125 from yesterday's close.  Jan 20 Soybeans closed at $9.1675/bushel, up $0.015 from yesterday's close.  Dec 19 Soymeal closed at $303.1/short ton, down $1 fr...

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Illuminating the value of technical research

On behalf of a commodity producer organization, WPI evaluated the outputs from a project that featured a $5 million investment into technical research over multiple years. WPI’s team captured the results of this extensive effort and synthesized them for presentation to the organization’s governing board; among the findings uncovered and presented for the first time was the development of genomic traits proven, via rigorous testing, to provide crop yield advantages of 50 percent or more to U.S. farmers in times of drought. Capturing measurable results from long-term efforts can be challenging. Educating clients on the dynamics of success measurement when quantifiable results are not readily available requires deep client-consultant collaboration and an ability to consider both near- and long-term client aspirations with market/policy dynamics – attributes that WPI brings to every consulting engagement.

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