Friday, June 22, 2012

U.S. Corn Prices Schizophrenic on Drought, Economy

The price of corn futures went up and down the last several days as disparate forces pressure the grain from different sides.

First there is the force pushing the price of corn down, which is the ongoing global recession, which has been trying to pull the price of corn to lower levels.

Countering that is the continuing drought, which is now expected to last into July in some important parts of the country, which has turned a number of traders bullish on it.

Around the world the global economy has been floundering, as China reported another decline in its manufacturing sector, the eighth straight month for them. Europe's economy has dropped for the fifth month in a row, and U.S. manufacturing is growing at a declining pace.

So the price of corn in the U.S. is largely based upon this competing influences, where in the short term it appears the weather may have the largest influence; although that has been changes on a daily basis at times.

Another factor that hasn't been taken into account by many is the major corn crop in Brazil’s Mato Grosso state, which could end up boosting the supply glut even more. If so, that would put downward pressure on corn in the near future.

At this time it appears over the next two or three weeks the weather may be the biggest factor in corn futures prices, which means we may see it go up during that time.

Beyond that it's likely the economy and corn production will be the determining factors, which means corn prices will drop as the summer rolls on.

Of course it depends on the weather over time, and whether some important corn production areas in the Midwest get some pockets of rain.

Corn for December climbed to $5.51-1/4 a bushel, jumping $0.23 percent, on the Chicago Board of Trade.


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