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  • Sep 25, 2015

    China and Brazil take control of the soybean market

    Soybean bulls were happy to see China, the world's top soybean importer, sign a commitment letter to buy 13.18 million metric tons. This was obviously a welcomed event, especially when you consider last year the Chinese delegation agreed to buy just 4.8 million tons....More
  • Sep 18, 2015

    Soybeans prices could be a surprise winner

    With global demand for soy fairly stable at this level and continued political uncertainty brewing in Argentina and Brazil, I'm going to stay patient in regard to reducing more new-crop risk. From a spec perspective, I like the thought of buying a deep break....More
  • Sep 16, 2015

    Will Fed's move support the corn market?

    There's a lot of talk that corn might take several runs to break-through the $3.95 to $4.05 area vs. the DEC15 contract. There's also talk that the funds have been covering some of their short positions in several markets as they try to lighten up the load ahead of the uncertainty surrounding the Fed's next move on Thursday....More
  • Sep 15, 2015

    Sequestration likely to affect farm program payments

    Many farm operators in the Upper Midwest are anticipating significant county-based Ag Risk Coverage (ARC-CO) farm program payments on corn for the 2014 crop year. Some producers are also likely to receive a fairly substantial ARC-CO payment for soybeans for the 2014 marketing year. It was recently revealed that the likely 2014 ARC-CO farm program payments, and any other farm program payments, are likely be subject to Federal government sequestration provisions....More
  • Sep 14, 2015

    Worst farm management practices

    This is my list of the worst top 10 management practices. There are most certainly other aspects and components that are very important for businesses, but this list demonstrates that discipline is required for success. Even the mundane, seemingly boring tasks and details can be extremely important....More
  • Sep 11, 2015

    USDA info provides tailwinds for corn prices

    Corn has rallied a bit this week ahead of what some inside the trade are thinking could be bullish adjustments by the USDA. Technically I still see heavy resistance up in the $3.85 to $4.05 range and believe it will be tough for corn prices to stay above this area until more harvest details become available...More
  • Sep 9, 2015

    Data changes thinking on the farm

    I just returned from the Farm Progress Show with even more confirmation that farmer adoption of data services will be a huge game-changer. Several innovative/early adopter farmers I spoke with (who are playing with nitrogen management services from DuPont Pioneer, Monsanto/Climate Corp. and others) have found great knowledge from the data, while being realistic about current data accuracy....More
  • Sep 8, 2015

    Complete, accurate farm financials necessary for ag lenders

    In the past, the lender may have completed the financial records for the borrower in reaction to stiff competition or perhaps, did a simple credit score check before allocating credit. These methods, however, are now history. Lack of complete and accurate financial records is indeed a serious issue; both for the lender and the producer....More
  • lender meeting
    Aug 31, 2015

    Advice for new ag lenders 1

    Increasingly, new lenders will be less familiar with agriculture and farm backgrounds. Further, expect individuals from varied backgrounds, national origins as well as perspectives to enter agricultural lending....More
  • corn field, cloudy sky
    Aug 31, 2015

    2014 ARC-CO payments likely

    It appears highly likely that many crop producers in Minnesota and northern Iowa who are enrolled in the county yield-based Ag Risk Coverage (ARC-CO) farm program choice on their corn base acres will earn a significant farm program payment for the 2014 crop year....More
  • Aug 28, 2015

    Is there still a bullish corn card to be played?

    Corn continues to trade inside a tight 10¢ range. U.S. exporters were happy to see better than expected weekly corn sales, but there is still talk of traditional buyers like South Korea going to Brazil for supply....More
  • Aug 25, 2015

    Tips for millennial generation farmers

    The millennial generation of producers will set new trends, use more advanced technology and take the agriculture industry into the future. Now is the time to mentor these young leaders and give them the tools they need to succeed professionally and individually....More
  • Aug 21, 2015

    After a rough week for soybeans, is the low price in?

    Soybeans continue to trade toward the low end of their range. The bulls are talking about the possibility of an additional 1 million acre reduction in U.S. harvested acreage and that U.S. exports to China might be picking up out of both the Gulf and the PNW....More
  • Aug 18, 2015

    Corn acreage estimates continue to be disputed

    Corn continues to show mixed tendencies as the initial FSA numbers and private crop tours leave more uncertainty and ambiguity than solid definitive answers....More
  • Aug 18, 2015

    Best risk-management tools for agriculture operations

    good risk management should be a number of strategies implemented in various combinations to mitigate risk for specific business needs. Often, a business manager imagines one silver bullet that will magically address all needs in the operation. Unfortunately, there is no single tool that effective....More

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