Christine's Feed
Jun 21, 2012

Grain shipping in upper US Midwest returning to normal

CHICAGO, June 21 (Reuters) – Port and rail operations for
grain shipping were beginning to return to normal in the upper
U.S. Midwest on Thursday after heavy rains drenched the region
this week, shippers said.

Major exporter CHS Inc said on Thursday it resumed
grain loading operations at its Superior, Wisconsin terminal, a
day after it halted loadings.

Jun 20, 2012

Oil lobby biggest threat to U.S. ethanol: RFA leader

CHICAGO (Reuters) – The biggest threat to U.S. ethanol makers, now struggling with negative profit margins, is not high corn prices but possible changes to the renewable fuel policy by Washington legislators, the top ethanol industry executive said on Wednesday.

“This year is tough. Our biggest challenge though is more about Capitol Hill and threats to policy than the markets and threats to profitability,” Bob Dinneen, chief executive of the Renewable Fuels Association, told Reuters on-line grain forum.

Jun 20, 2012

Factbox: U.S. visa types for immigrants: Papers in farmland

CHICAGO (Reuters) – There are some 185 different types of visas offered by the U.S. State Department. The government approved 7.5 million visas in 2011, with 94 percent for those who enter the U.S. on a temporary basis for travel or short-term work. The remaining 6 percent were awarded to immigrants seeking permanent residency.

Immigration experts estimate that at least 12 million immigrants remain undocumented and thus illegal in the United States, including thousands of workers in agriculture and food-related industries.

Jun 20, 2012

Midwest farm town, transformed by immigration, thrives

BEARDSTOWN, IL (Reuters) – Two years ago, Bozi Kiekie taught English at a university in the Congo. Although he liked his work, he wasn’t earning enough to make a good life for his family.

So Kiekie, 44, entered a lottery for one of 55,000 annual visas to enter the United States. When he won a so-called diversity visa, he came to Illinois, where he found a job cutting out hog tongues at the meatpacking plant in Beardstown, a small river town about 200 miles southwest of Chicago.

Jun 20, 2012

U.S. visa types for immigrants: Papers in farmland

CHICAGO (Reuters) – There are some 185 different types of visas offered by the U.S. State Department. The government approved 7.5 million visas in 2011, with 94 percent for th o se who enter the U.S. on a temporary basis for travel or short-term work. The remaining 6 percent were awarded to immigrants seeking permanent residency.

Immigration experts estimate that at least 12 million immigrants remain undocumented and thus illegal in the United States, including thousands of workers in agriculture and food-related industries.

Jun 5, 2012

MF Global payouts could take six years: CMC exec

CHICAGO (Reuters) – The complex pursuit of the missing $1.6 billion in segregated customer funds lost by bankrupt broker MF Global could take up to six years to sort out, with full payback to customers unlikely, a top futures industry official said on Tuesday.

“Six years, that’s my personal estimate,” Christine Cochran, an attorney and president of the Commodity Markets Council, told Reuters in an interview on the sidelines of an industry meeting on MF Global at the CME Group (CME.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) offices.

Jun 1, 2012

CFTC seen delaying broker conflict-of-interest rule

CHICAGO/WASHINGTON, June 1 (Reuters) – The U.S. futures
regulator is poised to postpone the compliance date of a hotly
debated new rule that the industry says will disrupt brokerage
research and damage customer communications, two people familiar
with the matter said.

The rule, finalized by the Commodity Futures Trading
Commission in February, seeks to establish a firewall between
the research, trading and clearing sides of big futures brokers.

May 17, 2012

Analysis: Japan’s Marubeni has eye on China with Gavilon bid

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Japan’s biggest potential investment in U.S. agriculture can be summed up in a single word: China.

Marubeni’s interest in buying U.S. grains merchant Gavilon to help provide grain to its hungry Asian neighbor would be a quantum leap from the 1970s and 1980s. Back then, Japanese trading houses tried to improve their own country’s food security by obtaining footholds in the U.S. grain supply chain.

May 15, 2012

US farmland stays hot at record high prices-Fed surveys

CHICAGO, May 15 (Reuters) – U.S. farmland prices soared to
record highs in the first quarter of 2012 fueled by strong crop
prices and buoyant farm income, with the pace of sales strongest
in the Plains but firm also in the Midwest Corn Belt, according
to two Federal Reserve bank surveys released on Tuesday.

The value of nonirrigated cropland in the Plains, which
stretches across big wheat, cattle and corn states, was up 25
percent from a year ago and irrigated farmland prices jumped 32
percent, the Kansas City Fed said.

May 15, 2012

U.S. Midwest farmland values stay hot -Chicago Fed

CHICAGO, May 15 (Reuters) – The price of prime farmland in
the U.S. Midwest grain belt was up 19 percent in the first
quarter compared with a year earlier, boosted by higher
commodity prices and net farm incomes, the Federal Reserve Bank
of Chicago said on Tuesday.

District land values extended their rapid rise at the start
of the year but fell “short of the torrid pace of 2011,” with
prices for good agricultural land up 5 percent in the quarter
compared to the final three months of 2011, the Fed said in its
quarterly survey of 231 bankers in the district.

    • About Christine

      "As community editor for Thomson Reuters global on-line chatroom for grains traders and analysts, the Global Ags Forum, I lead chats on the latest factors driving grains and oilseeds markets worldwide, organize chat events with expert industry sources and promote the room to potential market players. Based in Chicago, I also report on U.S. cash and futures grains and oilseeds markets."
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