Christine's Feed
Nov 28, 2012

Biggest risk to farmers: high input costs, not land

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Soaring farm operating costs, not record high land values feared by economists of possibly causing a repeat of the 1980s farm crisis, pose the greatest risk to U.S. farmers, the head of the country’s largest farm management company said on Tuesday.

CEO of Farmers National Company, Jim Farrell, told Reuters steep increases in cost of fertilizer, seed, fuel and machinery are the main concerns for farmers.

Nov 19, 2012

High speed traders jolt U.S. grain trade

CHICAGO, Nov 19 (Reuters) – The U.S. grain industry says
high speed computerized traders are disrupting their markets,
but grain exchanges and regulators have no quick fix for the
concerns, according to grain industry officials and traders.

The dispute, which pits grain companies at the Chicago Board
of Trade against speculators armed with algorithms and superfast
data feeds, echoes protests seen in world stock markets in
recent years as old-fashioned arm-waving traders have been
replaced by electronic matching of bids and offers on screens.

Nov 15, 2012

US farmland prices stay strong despite drought

CHICAGO, Nov 15 (Reuters) – Farmland prices in the United
States, the world’s largest grain and food exporter, stayed
strong in the third quarter as cash-rich farmers and investors
ignored the worst drought in 50 years and pushed values to
record highs in many areas.

Quarterly surveys by Federal Reserve banks in the Midwest,
Plains and mid-South showed that grain farmers, though hit hard,
did much better than livestock and dairy operators in coping
with the drought, thanks to extensive crop insurance. Growers
continue to buy and rent more land, with record corn and soybean
prices seen staying as key drivers in 2013.

Nov 15, 2012

Plains farmland prices set record but gains slow

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Average farmland prices in the Plains states jumped as much as 25 percent in the third quarter, setting new highs as demand remained strong, the Kansas City Federal Reserve said on Thursday.

But the rate of gains slowed down from the torrid pace of the past two years, the Kansas City Fed’s quarterly survey said.

Nov 6, 2012

Farm bill could be delayed until April 2013: farm policy analyst

MILWAUKEE (Reuters) – The Congress could delay passage of a new five-year farm bill until spring planting given the full plate of legislation needed after the election to avoid a fiscal cliff with its mandatory U.S. budget cuts, a top farm policy expert said on Monday.

“My prediction is that we will get a farm bill by April 2013. It will look very close to the Senate version,” Barry Flinchbaugh, a Kansas State University agricultural economist who advises legislators on shaping U.S. farm bills, told an agricultural bankers meeting.

Oct 19, 2012

Analysis: Wheat trade sees bumps in the road for CME-KCBT

CHICAGO (Reuters) – The merger of wheat futures markets in Chicago and Kansas City should boost trading volumes and exchange profits, but grain traders are worried about the effect on hedging and cash market pricing for hard red winter wheat.

“Hedgers and users of the Kansas City Board of Trade hard red winter wheat futures market recognize it and use it for what it is, the pricing mechanism for bread wheat. I don’t see that changing in the near future. But longer term, like everything in our industry, it may get interesting,” said Justin Gilpin, chief executive officer of the Kansas Wheat Commission, which represents growers of hard red winter wheat (HRW), the grain that’s traded in Kansas City.

Oct 16, 2012

US CFTC postpones decision on debated tape recording rule

CHICAGO, Oct 16 (Reuters) – Commodities regulators on
Tuesday postponed a decision on a record keeping rule for the
U.S. grain industry that has met

opposition from merchants and traders who say its
requirements to tape conversations will prove cumbersome and

Oct 11, 2012

Cargill profits rebound, braces for drought fallout

By Christine Stebbins

(Reuters) – Agribusiness giant Cargill Inc CARG.UL said on Thursday earnings recovered strongly after its worst quarter in two decades and expressed confidence it will handle continuing fall out from historic droughts in the U.S. and other nations.

Minneapolis-based Cargill, one of the world’s largest privately held corporations and a bellwether of world commodity markets, said net earnings totaled $975 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2013 ended August 31, more than quadruple the $236 million earned in the same quarter a year ago.

Oct 11, 2012

Cargill results bounce back in first quarter

Oct 11 (Reuters) – Agribusiness giant Cargill Inc
said on Thursday quarterly earnings rose strongly, boosted by
all five main business segments, but cautioned the impact of the
worst U.S. drought in a half century was still unfolding.

Minneapolis-based Cargill, one of the world’s largest
privately held corporations, reported net earnings of $975
million for the first quarter of fiscal 2013 ended Aug. 31,
versus $236 million for the same quarter a year ago.

Sep 28, 2012

Farm law to expire but many programs funded through March

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Expiration of U.S. farm law on October 1, shutting off dairy supports and putting 2013 crop subsidies in limbo, will cause pain for some farmers and frustration for many but programs like food stamps and crop insurance will roll on, analysts said.

Government funding is assured through March 2013 for many programs based on a July deal to extend budget authority reached by feuding Republicans and Democrats ahead of the November elections.

    • 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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