Corn, cotton, and wheat were up; soybeans were down for the week. Trade negotiations and weather continued to drive market direction this week. However, bubbling under the surface of commodity markets is the strengthening USD, which could have an impact on US agricultural exports for the remainder of 2018 and beyond. The USD Index has increased from 89.23 on April 17 to 93.38 on May 17, a 4.6% increase in value in one month. A strong USD makes agricultural exports less competitive on the global market. The USD index is a weighted measure of several currencies, so it provides a general direction of the strength of the USD relative to a global basket of currencies. Each commodity has currency exchange rates that are more important. For example, the Brazilian Real-to-USD exchange rate is important to soybean exports. As of May 17, 2018, one Brazilian Real would purchase 0.26997 USD, down 8.3% in the past month (On April 17, one Brazilian Real would purchase 0.29449 USD). While many factors impact the global demand for soybeans it will be important to watch the strength of the USD relative to the Brazilian Real (and to a lesser extent the Argentina Peso) throughout 2018 and into 2019. Continue reading at Tennessee Market Highlights.
21 May 2018