World Perspectives

Recent Asia Analysis

Fossil Fuel Foibles; Broken Mirrors; Biden on Asia; Threats on the Farm

Fossil Fuel Foibles Fossil fuels and agriculture are highly integrated, including via fuel, chemical inputs, and commodity fund valuations. Thus, it is important to watch climate campaigners attempting to use regulatory approaches toward reducing U.S. carbon emissions. Biden Administration appo...

FOB Prices and Freight Rate App (Updated 21 January)

Ocean Freight Comments - 21 January 2022 By Jay O'Neil Commodity Consulting This is certainly not the way vessel owners expected early 2022 markets to play out. The Capesize index has lost 90% of its value since last October as slack cargo demand and nervous FFA paper traders are not supporting...

Interactive Ocean Freight Rates (Updated 21 January)

Ocean Freight Comments - 20 January 2022 By Jay O'Neil Commodity Consulting This is certainly not the way vessel owners expected early 2022 markets to play out. The Capesize index has lost 90% of its value since last October as slack cargo demand and nervous FFA paper traders are not supporting...

Workers of World United

The analytics company CultureX says that people are more likely to quit their jobs due to a toxic workplace culture than due to their salary. That may be true but a Bain & Company survey of 20,000 workers in ten countries found that compensation was the number one issue for employees. This...

soy-oilseeds

Three-Year Rebuild

The price of palm oil has been rising since the start of 2021, reaching a local price roughly double the average of the previous dozen years. Production in 2021 was down around 5 percent from the historical average, but the lowest since 2016.  Malaysian palm oil exports were down nearly 11...

livestock

Beef: Where East Meets West

Beef demand in East Asia is on a long-term trend upward. Fulfilling this demand has required increased imports, primarily from Australia, Brazil, and the U.S. It has also resulted in a drawdown in the regions surplus stocks. Complicating the supply situation has been drought in Australia, an at...

Creeping Toward CPTPP

President Biden said he would first build back America’s infrastructure before re-engaging the U.S. in trade agreements. It should be noted that his infrastructure packages are stalled on Capitol Hill at the same time his trade policy has been creeping along toward fruition. Transatlantic...

soy-oilseeds

Oilseed Highlights: Soy Export Sales; Soybean Stocks; Palm Oil Price; ND Soy Crush Plant

U.S. Soy Export Sales and Exports Update Today’s USDA/FAS export sales report indicated exporters had a positive week selling U.S. soybeans for export in the week ending 23 September. Soybean exports also picked up from the previous week. Sales of soymeal also were fairly positive. ...

Wine over Beer; Bad Timing; PR Approach; Korean Hope

Wine over Beer Policymakers hoping to compel the citizenry into drastic actions to cut carbon emissions have poured cold water on their messaging with the current energy price spike. Now opponents are piling on with their own stark reminders of how cold literally kills. Winter cold still kills...

feed-grains soy-oilseeds wheat

Market Commentary: Macro Risk Off

Don’t take it personally that markets across the board showed weakness today. Exceptions being the dollar and lean hogs. The problem is dropping consumer sentiment as growth slows in Asia and worries grow about inflation. Notable was the Biden Administration’s announced plan to atta...

Ag Negotiator; Curious Quad

Ag Negotiator President Joe Biden announced his intent to nominate Elaine Trevino to be the U.S. Chief Agricultural Trade Negotiator. Trevino is President of the Almond Board Alliance of California. Her prior experience includes serving as Deputy Secretary and Assistant Secretary at the Califor...

soy-oilseeds

Oilseed Bonanza

Rabobank reports that over $2 billion is being invested to expand North American oilseed crush capacity. Part will be to support the expansion in biodiesel but overall oilseed demand remains strong. While the world’s population grows at an annual rate of 1.1 percent, global trade in veget...

energy

It is all Relative

The inflating costs of energy has some policymakers concerned about its impact on the economic recovery as consumers redirect their spending obligations. However, it is important to weigh inflation relative to the base cost. For example, energy costs are inflating faster in the U.S. and Canada,...

Common Poverty; Saved by Drought; Vietnam Concessions

Common Poverty Chinese President Xi Jinping has taken the Communist manifesto to heart and declared a “common prosperity” for all Chinese. Socialism and capitalism successfully coexist but it is dependent on private businesses retaining a degree of independence, certainty about the...

Commodities Fuel Bogeyman; Journalistic Malpractice; Cold Afghan Water

Commodities Fuel Bogeyman In the most recent Hill-HarrisX poll of American public opinion, the top selected issue of current concern is inflation. Inequality slightly beat out inflation as a top concern for Democratic respondents, who also had very low concern for the second most important issu...

Inconvenient Truths; Innovative Approach; Killing Innovation

Inconvenient Truths EU officials released a preliminary analysis of the impacts of the F2F and biodiversity changes to the CAP and major farm organizations Copa & Cogeca have highlighted its disappointing results. The EU’s Joint Research Center came to the same conclusions as USDA&rsq...

livestock

U.S. Red Meat Exports Winning the Long Game

The May export data is in. Pork export volume was the third highest on record behind March 2020 and March 2021. Beef export volume set a historic record (also beating the previous high mark of March 2021), and for the third consecutive month the beef export value set a record. To date, beef exp...

livestock

We Have The Meat

There are a lot of voices discouraging the consumption of meat but for much of the world, demand continues to grow. Most of that demand growth is in Asia and so it is little surprise that the trade in pork has been growing the fastest. Given its lower cost, it would be reasonable to assume that...

Productivity Impacts; Classic Policy Divides

Productivity Impacts The Kansas City Federal Reserve kicked off its annual conference on agriculture with this year’s topic seemingly a little tin eared. The focus is on productivity. Topics include the role of research and development, technology and data, and spillover effects on the su...

Anti-Meat Campaign; Personnel Picks

Anti-Meat Campaign The number of media articles against consuming meat and poultry is beginning to spike. They cover the range of arguments served up by vegetarian campaigners – bad for the environment, bad for human health, unethical, etc. There are of course counter-arguments but there...

livestock

Livestock Round Up: Bullish Beef Outlook

It’s a month and a half until Memorial Day weekend, the official kick off of seasonal beef demand. The Choice cutout was $276.62/cwt today, up from a $272/cwt average last week, which was up about $20/cwt from the week prior. Part of that rally is demand, and part is supply. March beef pr...

Defining Worker-Led Trade Policy; Trade Bullying

Defining Worker-Led Trade Policy A session at the Washington International Trade Association today tried to unravel the meaning of the Biden Administration’s so-called worker-led trade policy. Most of the discussion centered on high level economic theory and the mischaracterization of tra...

Pandemic Not Fully Reflected

The Pew Research Center has attracted a lot of ink for its analysis of losses to middle income earners from the pandemic. Its data, derived from World Bank and IMF numbers, show the greatest loss of the middle class in South Asia, followed by East Asia. The advanced economies saw growth in the...

Taiwan – Tip of the Spear

It is unclear which of several geopolitical rifts (Xinjiang, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South China Sea, etc.) between China and the west is going to prove the tipping point toward open conflict but there are ample opportunities. Beijing’s latest move was to reduce and control the number of elect...

Fossil Fuel Foibles; Broken Mirrors; Biden on Asia; Threats on the Farm

Fossil Fuel Foibles Fossil fuels and agriculture are highly integrated, including via fuel, chemical inputs, and commodity fund valuations. Thus, it is important to watch climate campaigners attempting to use regulatory approaches toward reducing U.S. carbon emissions. Biden Administration appo...

FOB Prices and Freight Rate App (Updated 21 January)

Ocean Freight Comments - 21 January 2022 By Jay O'Neil Commodity Consulting This is certainly not the way vessel owners expected early 2022 markets to play out. The Capesize index has lost 90% of its value since last October as slack cargo demand and nervous FFA paper traders are not supporting...

Interactive Ocean Freight Rates (Updated 21 January)

Ocean Freight Comments - 20 January 2022 By Jay O'Neil Commodity Consulting This is certainly not the way vessel owners expected early 2022 markets to play out. The Capesize index has lost 90% of its value since last October as slack cargo demand and nervous FFA paper traders are not supporting...

Workers of World United

The analytics company CultureX says that people are more likely to quit their jobs due to a toxic workplace culture than due to their salary. That may be true but a Bain & Company survey of 20,000 workers in ten countries found that compensation was the number one issue for employees. This...

soy-oilseeds

Three-Year Rebuild

The price of palm oil has been rising since the start of 2021, reaching a local price roughly double the average of the previous dozen years. Production in 2021 was down around 5 percent from the historical average, but the lowest since 2016.  Malaysian palm oil exports were down nearly 11...

livestock

Beef: Where East Meets West

Beef demand in East Asia is on a long-term trend upward. Fulfilling this demand has required increased imports, primarily from Australia, Brazil, and the U.S. It has also resulted in a drawdown in the regions surplus stocks. Complicating the supply situation has been drought in Australia, an at...

Creeping Toward CPTPP

President Biden said he would first build back America’s infrastructure before re-engaging the U.S. in trade agreements. It should be noted that his infrastructure packages are stalled on Capitol Hill at the same time his trade policy has been creeping along toward fruition. Transatlantic...

soy-oilseeds

Oilseed Highlights: Soy Export Sales; Soybean Stocks; Palm Oil Price; ND Soy Crush Plant

U.S. Soy Export Sales and Exports Update Today’s USDA/FAS export sales report indicated exporters had a positive week selling U.S. soybeans for export in the week ending 23 September. Soybean exports also picked up from the previous week. Sales of soymeal also were fairly positive. ...

Wine over Beer; Bad Timing; PR Approach; Korean Hope

Wine over Beer Policymakers hoping to compel the citizenry into drastic actions to cut carbon emissions have poured cold water on their messaging with the current energy price spike. Now opponents are piling on with their own stark reminders of how cold literally kills. Winter cold still kills...

feed-grains soy-oilseeds wheat

Market Commentary: Macro Risk Off

Don’t take it personally that markets across the board showed weakness today. Exceptions being the dollar and lean hogs. The problem is dropping consumer sentiment as growth slows in Asia and worries grow about inflation. Notable was the Biden Administration’s announced plan to atta...

Ag Negotiator; Curious Quad

Ag Negotiator President Joe Biden announced his intent to nominate Elaine Trevino to be the U.S. Chief Agricultural Trade Negotiator. Trevino is President of the Almond Board Alliance of California. Her prior experience includes serving as Deputy Secretary and Assistant Secretary at the Califor...

soy-oilseeds

Oilseed Bonanza

Rabobank reports that over $2 billion is being invested to expand North American oilseed crush capacity. Part will be to support the expansion in biodiesel but overall oilseed demand remains strong. While the world’s population grows at an annual rate of 1.1 percent, global trade in veget...

energy

It is all Relative

The inflating costs of energy has some policymakers concerned about its impact on the economic recovery as consumers redirect their spending obligations. However, it is important to weigh inflation relative to the base cost. For example, energy costs are inflating faster in the U.S. and Canada,...

Common Poverty; Saved by Drought; Vietnam Concessions

Common Poverty Chinese President Xi Jinping has taken the Communist manifesto to heart and declared a “common prosperity” for all Chinese. Socialism and capitalism successfully coexist but it is dependent on private businesses retaining a degree of independence, certainty about the...

Commodities Fuel Bogeyman; Journalistic Malpractice; Cold Afghan Water

Commodities Fuel Bogeyman In the most recent Hill-HarrisX poll of American public opinion, the top selected issue of current concern is inflation. Inequality slightly beat out inflation as a top concern for Democratic respondents, who also had very low concern for the second most important issu...

Inconvenient Truths; Innovative Approach; Killing Innovation

Inconvenient Truths EU officials released a preliminary analysis of the impacts of the F2F and biodiversity changes to the CAP and major farm organizations Copa & Cogeca have highlighted its disappointing results. The EU’s Joint Research Center came to the same conclusions as USDA&rsq...

livestock

U.S. Red Meat Exports Winning the Long Game

The May export data is in. Pork export volume was the third highest on record behind March 2020 and March 2021. Beef export volume set a historic record (also beating the previous high mark of March 2021), and for the third consecutive month the beef export value set a record. To date, beef exp...

livestock

We Have The Meat

There are a lot of voices discouraging the consumption of meat but for much of the world, demand continues to grow. Most of that demand growth is in Asia and so it is little surprise that the trade in pork has been growing the fastest. Given its lower cost, it would be reasonable to assume that...

Productivity Impacts; Classic Policy Divides

Productivity Impacts The Kansas City Federal Reserve kicked off its annual conference on agriculture with this year’s topic seemingly a little tin eared. The focus is on productivity. Topics include the role of research and development, technology and data, and spillover effects on the su...

Anti-Meat Campaign; Personnel Picks

Anti-Meat Campaign The number of media articles against consuming meat and poultry is beginning to spike. They cover the range of arguments served up by vegetarian campaigners – bad for the environment, bad for human health, unethical, etc. There are of course counter-arguments but there...

livestock

Livestock Round Up: Bullish Beef Outlook

It’s a month and a half until Memorial Day weekend, the official kick off of seasonal beef demand. The Choice cutout was $276.62/cwt today, up from a $272/cwt average last week, which was up about $20/cwt from the week prior. Part of that rally is demand, and part is supply. March beef pr...

Defining Worker-Led Trade Policy; Trade Bullying

Defining Worker-Led Trade Policy A session at the Washington International Trade Association today tried to unravel the meaning of the Biden Administration’s so-called worker-led trade policy. Most of the discussion centered on high level economic theory and the mischaracterization of tra...

Pandemic Not Fully Reflected

The Pew Research Center has attracted a lot of ink for its analysis of losses to middle income earners from the pandemic. Its data, derived from World Bank and IMF numbers, show the greatest loss of the middle class in South Asia, followed by East Asia. The advanced economies saw growth in the...

Taiwan – Tip of the Spear

It is unclear which of several geopolitical rifts (Xinjiang, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South China Sea, etc.) between China and the west is going to prove the tipping point toward open conflict but there are ample opportunities. Beijing’s latest move was to reduce and control the number of elect...

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