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Goldman lifts hopes for commodities - but not ags

Posted on 15 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Goldman Sachs kept a downbeat view on prospects for agricultural commodity prices even as it raised expectations for raw material values as a whole, but acknowledged that it may prove too gloomy on softs and livestock.
The investment bank raised to “neutral” from “underweight” its rating on commodities, saying that prospects for further price falls had been diminished by a recent erosion in values and the prospect of strong economic growth in countries such as the US………………………………………..Full Article: Source

El Nino a looming wild card for commodities

Posted on 14 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Commodity traders are placing their bets on El Nino. The periodic weather phenomenon leads to torrential rain in South America and droughts in Asia and Africa, and may provide a needed boost for commodities after last year’s slump in prices.
Weather forecasters around the world are predicting that a shift in climate patterns could occur this summer, with some warning of the strongest El Nino in more than a decade………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Is speculation behind wheat price rise?

Posted on 13 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In May 2007, the Centre banned wheat futures trading after prices surged in the open market when production turned out to be lower than expected. Output then was 75.81 million tonnes against initial projections of about 80 million tonnes. The lower production also led to procurement by Government agencies for buffer stocks plunging to 11.12 million tonnes (mt).
Prices then rose to ₹1,000 a quintal in the open market, forcing the Centre to blame the increase on the futures trading and subsequently ban it. The then National Commodities and Derivatives Exchange chief PH Ravishankar said that the rise was not surprising since the futures market had been pointing to such a trend from 2006-end………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Commodities outlook: Rains to determine El Niño impact

Posted on 12 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The term El Niño refers to a large-scale ocean-atmosphere climate interaction, linked to a periodic warming in sea surface temperatures across the central and east-central equatorial Pacific. The occurrence of one during India’s southwest monsoon (June-September) is associated with below-normal rain. And, hence, has a significant bearing on kharif crop production.
Between 2001 and 2010, there have been three years (2002, 2004 and 2009) when the rains were deficient, respectively by 19 per cent, 13 per cent and 23 per cent due to this. According to the latest update from India Meteorological Department (IMD), there is a 60 per cent probability of one this year. IMD feels El Niño could have an effect on August-September rains, while the Australian Bureau of Meteorology has stated an El Niño could develop as early as July. What needs to be seen is the intensity………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Agriculture ETFs Love the Weatherman

Posted on 07 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Nearly 160 exchange traded products are up at least 10% this year, according to a Finviz screen. That works out to almost 10% of the entire U.S. ETP universe and nearly 16% of those ETFs have something in common: Exposure to agriculture, livestock or soft commodities.
A drought in Brazil and a harsh winter in parts of the U.S., among other catalysts, have lifted agriculture and soft commodities ranging from coffee to sugar to wheat and livestock. Investors and professional speculators are taking notice………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds miss the mark betting on rising grains

Posted on 06 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The concerns over weather setbacks to US winter wheat, and to spring corn sowings, drove hedge funds to take a more bullish position on agricultural commodities, although sentiment on cocoa declinesd sharply.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, raised its net long position in futures and options in the top 13 US-traded agricultural commodities, from coffee to lean hogs, by more than 56,000 contracts in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds wrong-footed by grain price recovery

Posted on 29 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds appear to have been wrong-footed by the rebound in US grain and soybean prices last week on weather and Ukraine fears, cutting their bullish bets on corn and wheat in the run-up to the recovery.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, cut its net long in future and options in the top 13 US-traded agricultural commodities by more than 40,000 contracts in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator………………………………………..Full Article: Source

El Niño could impact wide range of commodities

Posted on 28 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Global farmers, fishermen, meteorologists and commodities traders are closely watching water temperatures in the South Pacific, waiting to see if the water will warm up this summer, a telltale sign of the El Niño phenomenon. According to the U.S. Climate Prediction Center, there is a roughly 65 percent chance that the climate pattern will develop, which could bring extreme weather conditions around the world. The last major El Niño event was in 1998.
Typically, El Niño brings drought to Australia, Asia and West Africa, which can wreak havoc on their commodity production, hurting those regions’ output of a wide range of commodities, including wheat, rice, coffee and cocoa………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Commodity investors brace for El Niño

Posted on 25 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Commodities investors are bracing themselves for the ever-growing possibility for the occurrence of a weather phenomenon known as El Niño by mid-year which threatens to play havoc with commodities markets ranging from cocoa to zinc.
The El Niño phenomenon, which tends to occur every 3-6 years, is associated with above-average water temperatures in the central and eastern Pacific and can, in its worst form, bring drought to West Africa (the world’s largest cocoa producing region), less rainfall to India during its vital Monsoon season and drier conditions for the cultivation of crops in Australia………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EU should halve meat, dairy consumption to cut nitrogen-report

Posted on 25 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

People in the European Union, who according to a United Nations body eat way more protein than necessary, could prompt big cuts in nitrogen pollution if they halved their meat and dairy consumption, a U.N.-backed report said.
Nitrogen is used in fertiliser to replace nutrients which are removed by soils during plant growth but excess nitrogen can harm the environment by polluting water, air and soil………………………………………..Full Article: Source

“Enormous potential” for agriculture funds

Posted on 23 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Buy land, said Mark Twain, they ain’t making it any more. He also observed that one of the secrets of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside. Taken together, these two aphorisms go a long way to explaining the appeal of investment in agriculture.
The world may not be making any more land but it’s certainly making more people, and increasingly many millions of those extra mouths are consuming what they like - and that means protein-rich meat diets of the kind the advanced economies have been enjoying for years………………………………………..Full Article: Source

El Niño could start as early as July

Posted on 23 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

An El Niño weather phenomenon, which can trigger extreme weather patterns around the world and disrupt commodities markets, could start as early as July, according to a leading forecaster.
The Australian Bureau of Meteorology on Tuesday said six of seven weather models suggested sea surface temperatures in the Pacific could exceed El Niño thresholds “as early as July”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Chances of new El Niño cycle in 2014 impact on agricultural commodities

Posted on 22 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Concerns about the arrival of a new El Niño weather phenomenon have increased in recent weeks. A possible new El Niño cycle has a major impact on the global commodities market. El Niño - a weather phenomenon that occurs once every five years on average - involves periodical warm ocean water temperatures off the western coast of South America which can cause climatic changes across the Pacific Ocean.
Its impact on harvests and the world varies; sometimes passing almost unnoticeable (such as in 2010) but it can also be felt worldwide………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Pre El Nino implications for spring/summer weather and commodities

Posted on 16 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

There is a lot of talk about El Nino and often, as is the case in commodities, some hype over which crops and futures contracts will be affected in coming weeks and months. It is important to look, not just at the timing of when El Nino forms and how strong it might be, but ocean temperatures in other parts of the globe.
El Nino “does not” always imply higher commodity prices and disasters around the world. In fact, a cooler U.S. summer and weak hurricane season would cap rallies in corn, soybeans and natural gas this summer. In addition, global ocean temperatures (see below) may bring about good early season weather for West Africa’s cocoa crop………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds end ‘record’ ag commodity buying spree

Posted on 15 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds’ longest run of bullish positioning by agricultural commodities in recent history ended as investors took profits on gains, as well as placing more bets on falling prices. Managed money, a proxy for speculators, cut its net long position in futures and options in the top 13 US-traded agricultural commodities, from cotton to cattle, by nearly 38,000 contracts in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator.
The decline reflected the first week-on-week drop in the net long position – the extent to which long holdings, which profit when prices rise, exceed short positions, which benefit when values fall – since January………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global market for soy protein to witness 6.3% CAGR to $9214.4 mln in 2018

Posted on 15 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The global market for soy protein is expected to surge from $6,399.9 mn in 2012 to $9,214.4 mn in 2018. The industry is growing at a CAGR of 6.3% from 2013 to 2018. In 2012, North America dominated the global soy protein ingredients market. Because of rapid advancement and increasing demand from key countries such as China and India, Asia-Pacific is expected to be the fastest growing market in the near future.
The report “Soy Protein Ingredients Market By Types (Isolates, Concentrates, and Others), Applications, and Geography - Global Trends and Forecasts to 2018”, said the major rivers for this market are functionality, cost, health benefits, eco-friendliness, and versatility………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The commodity price which gains most during El Ninos is…

Posted on 10 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

What’s the best bet for commodity bulls mulling how to exploit the El Nino which looks an increasingly likelihood this year?
It may actually be a metal rather than any of the crops which suffer the most high-profile effects from the weather pattern, which is linked to the likes of drought in eastern Australia, denting wheat production, dryness in South East Asia, hurting palm oil output, and flooding in Ecuador’s cocoa belt………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Dubai’s DGCX to launch agricultural contracts in 2015

Posted on 08 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange (DGCX) is planning to launch agricultural commodities contracts in the first quarter of 2015, the bourse’s chief executive officer said on Monday.
“That’s something we really want to do, as we want to be able to diversify the products that we list on the exchange,” Gary Anderson told Reuters on the sidelines of a precious metals conference in Dubai………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds’ bullish spree on ags tests ‘record’

Posted on 08 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds’ raised the stakes in their bets on agricultural commodity prices for a ninth successive week, one the longest sprees on record, as a US corn planting hopes added to concerns over weather setbacks to a number of crops.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, raised its net long in future and options in the top 13 US-traded agricultural commodities by more than 49,000 contracts in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Organic crops may get a commodities exchange

Posted on 04 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

If you want to know the price of a bushel of corn, you can find it on the website of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME). The market value of organic corn or grains grown without genetically modified seeds is harder to find. These crops are traded privately, with growers negotiating rates with buyers over the phone or via e-mail.
Kellee James wants to change that. As co-founder and chief executive officer of Mercaris, a market data service and online trading platform for organic and non-genetically modified organism commodities, James plans to build an exchange so such crops can trade the same way as conventional commodities………………………………Full Article: Source

Agricultural commodities prices rocket

Posted on 27 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Agricultural commodities have been strong performers since the start of the year. Good for the speculators, but does it does raise wider concerns that a global economic revival might end up being squeezed.
Analysts cite demand from China as being a major driver of agricultural prices. But fears the Crimean crisis could end up restricting Ukrainian grain exports have also sent them shooting higher. If supply constrictions are the primary driver, higher prices could yet dent global economic revival as consumers forced to pay more for food have less money to pay for other goods…………………………………Full Article: Source

World awash with raw Sugar, El Nino threat in Brazil keeps bulls in charge

Posted on 27 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The world is awash with sugar as Brazil sugar is being offered at deep discounts for export and new harvest a few weeks away. However, positive trends continue in ICE Raw Sugar futures for May delivery which is up 1.18% at US$ 0.171 a pound on possible El Nino impacting sugar production in Brazil later this year.But markets have calmed down after rallying to a four-month high of $0.1846 a pound.
In the short run, however, raw sugar is being offered at 10 points below ICE futures which suggests abundant stocks worldwide, a Reuters report quoting trade sources said…………………………………Full Article: Source

Farming in America: ‘There’s a growing discontent’

Posted on 24 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

It’s not easy being a farmer in the U.S. these days and it’s bound to get harder, say those who should know. “There’s a growing discontent among the farming community,” said John Kempf, a fruit and vegetable farmer in northeast Ohio.
“We have a farming model now that is antagonistic to the enjoyment of watching seeds grow and seeing a new born animal,” said the 26-year-old Kempf, who is chief executive of Advancing Eco Agriculture, a farming and crop nutrition consulting company………………………………………..Full Article: Source

FMC likely to ease price limits for agricultural commodities soon

Posted on 24 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Commodity market regulator Forward Markets Commission may relax the daily price limit for agricultural commodities on the futures platform. This will be in line with that of non-agricultural commodities such as bullion, metals and energy traded on the exchanges.
Currently, agricultural commodities have a maximum daily price limit of four per cent on both the upper and lower sides. In contrast, bullion and other non-agricultural commodities, the first price limit is six per cent. It gets extended subsequently by three per cent, with a cooling period of 15 minutes………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Next boom in commodities could be in agri products: Report

Posted on 19 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The next commodities boom could be in the agriculture sector with middle class incomes boosting the demand for food items such as meat, dairy, sugar and edible oils, an HSBC report said. This could present investment opportunities in agriculture, it said.
“It may, in fact, be the case that food prices have the potential to outperform relative to metals and energy prices in the coming years, as growing middle class incomes continue to boost demand,” the HSBC Global Research said in its latest report………………………………………..Full Article: Source

How to play the rise in agricultural commodities

Posted on 19 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

So far this year, agricultural commodities have outperformed most other asset classes. While some have outperformed others in general, we have seen strong performances. In a market where investors are becoming jittery holding stocks after such a large increase in value, I suspect that some of that money is going to find its way into agricultural commodites and related assets.
This could be the catalyst that will drive agricultural commodities to a higher fundamental valuation, which is warranted given the fact that demand for these commodities is steadily increasing, while supply is not………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds most bullish on ags in three years

Posted on 18 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds turned their most bullish on agricultural commodities for three years, as they flocked to bet on higher grain prices amid the mounting tensions over Ukraine, and raised the stakes on the sugar rally too.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, raised its net long position in futures and options in the top 13 US-traded agricultural commodities, by more than 133,000 contracts in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) regulator………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Why coffee futures are up 80pct in 2014

Posted on 18 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

After commodities had a rough go in 2013, taking the backseat to surging equities, it seems that this year has more favorable conditions in store for a number of hard assets. Though a number of commodities have gotten off to a white-hot start this year, none have even come close to the gains that coffee futures have notched, as that commodity has spiked more than 80% through the first 10 weeks of the year.
Coffee on the Rise: Futures for coffee are currently hovering at a fresh two-year high, as production in the world’s most vital region has spooked investors. Brazil is, by far, the largest producer of coffee on an annual basis………………………………………..Full Article: Source

El Niño warning puts farmers and commodities investors on alert

Posted on 12 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Commodities investors and farmers are on alert after the third official warning in a week of an El Niño weather phenomenon emerging that could affect food and energy markets already reeling from extreme weather in many parts of the world.
El Niño refers to a warming of Pacific sea surface temperatures that occurs naturally every few years and can trigger drought in some parts of the world and floods in others, depending on its strength………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Cotton: US,China announces fresh support for farmers ahead of planting

Posted on 06 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

World largest cotton exporter USA and consumer China have announced fresh farmer support policies ahead of planting season this year. International Cotton Advisory Commitee (ICAC) said that in March harvesting will be underway in the Southern Hemisphere while planting will take place in many countries in the Northern Hemisphere. In 2013/14, world area is estimated at 33.1 mn hectares and is expected to remain fairly stable in 2014/15 at 33 mn ha.
On February 7, 2014, President Obama signed the 2014 U.S. Farm Bill into law. The Direct Payments,Countercyclical Payments and Average Crop Revenue Election (ACRE) programs are repealed for all commodities and, for upland cotton, replaced by the Stacked Income Protection Plan (STAX)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Grain boom busts Canada farmers as rail lags: Commodities

Posted on 05 March 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Canada’s grain-supply boom is turning into a bust for farmers as record harvests and railroad logjams make sales almost impossible.
Consider Dennis Gallant, 76. He has yet to collect one cent on the wheat, canola, barley and oats harvested last year on the 1,000-acre farm in Warren, Manitoba, he has run since 1960. He has called the local grain elevator every 10 days since October. The answer since is always the same. No thanks. We’re full………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China’s smog suffocating agriculture?

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China’s air pollution is putting the country’s agriculture sector at risk, experts say. Smog has blanketed Beijing for at least a week, and much of north and central China — about one-seventh of the country — was also covered in smog last weekend, state-run news agency Xinhua reports.
On Wednesday evening, PM2.5 levels — the measurement of air pollution particles less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter, which pose health risks — averaged 446 micrograms per cubic meter over a 24-hour period, readings from the U.S. Embassy in Beijing showed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

When China’s food runs out

Posted on 12 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

New state guidelines from China suggest the country will soon be producing less grain than it consumes, ending a long-standing pledge to be self-sufficient in its staple foods. It might not sound much. But a China without self-sufficiency will have major ramifications around the world.
Today’s Financial Times cites new guidelines from the State Council, the most significant decision-making body in China’s national government, which set out the country’s food policy for the years ahead. It notes that, for the first time, the country has set a grains output target well below domestic consumption rates………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global sugar market could switch to deficit in 2014-15

Posted on 11 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The global sugar market could tip into a small deficit in 2014/15 after four years of surpluses as producers struggle to cover their costs, but the stocks built up during the years of ample supply will be a brake on any recovery in prices.
Traders and analysts attending the February 8-11 Dubai Platts Kingsman sugar conference said sugar consumption was outpacing flat-to-weaker production into 2015. “Pretty much all producers are operating at below costs of production,” said Kona Haque, head of agricultural commodities research at Macquarie Bank………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Coffee to soybean wagers climb on Brazilian drought

Posted on 11 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds raised bullish commodity bets to a 15-week high after a drought in Brazil threatened crops from coffee to soybeans. The net-long position across 18 U.S.-traded commodities climbed 15 percent to 900,330 futures and options in the week ended Feb. 4, the biggest gain since August, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show.
Investors turned bullish on arabica coffee for the first time since July 2012 and soybean wagers rose by the most in almost three months. Brazil is the biggest exporter of both crops………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global food prices drop 1.3pct in January: FAO

Posted on 10 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Global food prices fell 1.3 per cent last month from December levels on large supplies of oils, sugar and cereals, according to the United Nations food agency FAO.
“We are seeing lower prices due to abundant supplies, but stronger upturn in demand, such as an increase in the pace of imports from Asia, could limit the decline,” said FAO economist Abdolreza Abbassian. The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) price index measures monthly price changes for a basket of cereals, oilseeds, dairy products, meat and sugar…………………………….Full Article: Source

World cotton production to decline 4pct, mill use to rise 1pct: ICAC

Posted on 05 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Global cotton production is expected to decreae 4% to 25.7 mn tons in 2013/14 compared to 2012/13 while mill use is likely to rise 1% to 23.6 mn tons according to International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC).
The 2013-14 production would be 8% off from peak production of 28 million tons in 2011/12. This is due principally to lower yields and less area planted with cotton. The world average yield in 2013/14 is forecast at 777 kilograms per hectare, down 2% from last season and world area is forecast at 33.1 million tons, also down 2% from last season………………………………………..Full Article: Source

PotashCorp forecasts weaker 2014

Posted on 03 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Potash Corp of Saskatchewan reported a weaker than anticipated outlook this year, as CEO Bill Doyle observed that 4Q13 “was a challenger quarter.” “Pricing headwinds, most notably in potash persisted as global markets struggled to find stability,” Doyle said.
“Although we witnessed potash demand begin to return in certain regions, most notably in North America, where fall application was underway, limited buyer engagement in contract markets kept offshore shipments at muted levels,” he said. “In this environment, prices eroded and put pressure on gross margin for both the quarter and the full year.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Africa corn buyers miss out on cheaper world grain: Commodities

Posted on 22 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A record global grain harvest has done nothing to help Jailos Kamuloni feed his family in Malawi, where costs have skyrocketed for the corn flour used to make the thick nsima porridge that people eat at almost every meal.
In parts of southern Africa, drought damaged crops and cut food supplies for countries lacking the resources to import cheaper grain from outside the continent. While corn futures in Chicago have plummeted to the lowest in three years, the price in Malawi jumped 20 percent in the past month……………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds end record bearish spree on ag futures

Posted on 21 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds ended their longest spree of bearish positioning on agricultural commodities on record as they took profits on short positions in grains, and hiked bullish bets on live cattle to a three-year high.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, raised by more than 53,000 contracts its net long in futures and options in the main 13 US-traded agricultural commodities as of Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Immense challenges for world hunger: agriculture ministers

Posted on 20 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Resource scarcity, climate change and loss of soil fertility create uncertainty endangering investment in agriculture. Efforts to rid the world of hunger face immense challenges as farmers deal with resource scarcity, climate change and loss of soil fertility, agriculture ministers from 65 countries said.
Economic and financial crisis and excessive price swings create uncertainty that endangers investment in agriculture, the policy makers gathered in Berlin wrote in a joint statement published by the German agriculture ministry………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Commodities: China gets taste for cafe latte but investors must wait for returns to stir

Posted on 20 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Longer-term investors have already started to position their portfolios to capture higher yields they hope will eventually come from rising demand for beans in emerging markets, especially China.
Coffee prices slumped late last year to a seven-year low on a supply glut but investors should focus on the long-term outlook for the commodity as the emerging trend for cafe latte replacing green tea among Chinese consumers picks up………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EU moves to curb food price bets by traders

Posted on 16 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

New rules would help decrease price volatility and inflation of staple foods and other commodities, says British MEP. The European Union has voted through rules to limit the ability of banks and hedge funds to bet on food prices.
Arlene McCarthy, a Labour MEP for the north-west, said the new rules, known as Mifid, would “curb speculation and help decrease price volatility and inflation” which had a “devastating impact on poor and food dependent countries”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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Hedge funds’ bearish turn on ags extends into 2014

Posted on 14 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds started the new year where they left off 2013 in extending their bearish positioning on agricultural commodities, fuelled by a raise in their net short holding on Chicago wheat to a record high – a profitable call.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, cut its net long position in futures and options in the top 13 US-traded agricultural commodities, from cotton to cattle, by more than 40,000 contracts in the first week of 2014, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Corn pile biggest since 1994 as crop overwhelms use: Commodities

Posted on 10 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Stockpiles of corn in the U.S., the world’s top grower, are rising at the fastest pace in 19 years as a record crop overwhelms increased demand for the grain used to make livestock feed and ethanol.
Inventories on Dec. 1, the first tally since the harvest was complete, probably totaled 10.764 billion bushels (273.4 million metric tons), 34 percent more than a year earlier, according to the average of 24 analyst estimates in a Bloomberg survey……………………………..Full Article: Source

Social issues divide France and Germany on agriculture

Posted on 09 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The German Minister of Agriculture paid a visit to his French counterpart in Paris yesterday (7 January) in a show of unity between the two sides. But divisions remain deep on social dumping, an issue that is expected to become hotter in France as the EU elections approach.
Hans-Peter Friedrich, the new German minister of agriculture, met his French counterpart, Stéphane Le Foll, yesterday (7 January) in Paris to prepare the forthcoming Franco-German summit, scheduled for 19 February………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds’ wheat gloom may ‘fuel price revival’

Posted on 08 January 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The return, close to a record high, in hedge funds’ bets on falling wheat values, coupled with cold fears could - ironically - fuel a revival in prices, which took aim at a third successive day of gains on US markets.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, cut its net long position in futures and options in the major 13 US-traded agricultural commodities by nearly 40,000 contracts in the last week of 2013, data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator showed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

What will 2014 and the next years hold for agriculture?

Posted on 30 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Midwest Rural Agricultural Safety and Health Conference in Ames in mid-November featured reviews of changes in agriculture during the past 40 years, along with predictions about what the next 40 years will offer. Some of the people whom I most respect for their understanding of agriculture and rural life tendered their assessments.
This is the first of two columns about the nearby future of agriculture. Nobody can predict more than a few years anymore………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Chocolate eaters drive record cocoa-output deficit: Commodities

Posted on 18 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Global cocoa supplies are headed for the longest production shortfall in more than five decades as chocolate demand surges in Asia. Cocoa use will top output by about 70,000 metric tons in the 12 months started Oct. 1 and deficits will persist through 2018, a six-year stretch that would be the longest since the data began in 1960, said Laurent Pipitone, head of statistics at the International Cocoa Organization in London.
Prices may rally 15 percent to $3,200 a ton by the end of 2014, according to the median of 14 trader estimates in a Bloomberg News survey………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds’ ag sell-down longest in six years

Posted on 17 December 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds’ sell-down on agricultural commodities extended to the longest in more than six years as investors position for what many commentators expect to be a bearish 2014 for prices, undermined by inventory rebuilds.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, reduced its net long position in futures and options in the major 13 US-traded agricultural commodities by 18,000 contracts in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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