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Daily US grain report: grain futures bears gaining a stronger grip on markets

US grain futures prices were steady to weaker in overnight trading; corn was near steady, soybeans down around 3 cents and wheat was 2 to 3 cents weaker.

31 July 2019, at 4:45pm

There are growing notions among US grain traders that the corn and soybean crops, despite the record late plantings this year, are faring pretty well heading into the critical growing month of August. And the weather forecasts for the next 10 days are not threatening to the crops, with seasonal temperatures but still a bit dry.

Drop below what was the July low of $4.20 1/2 produced serious chart damage and suggests sustained downtrend
Drop below what was the July low of $4.20 1/2 produced serious chart damage and suggests sustained downtrend

© Jim Wyckoff

The US-China trade front is also getting a bearish read from grain traders.

High-level talks in Shanghai this week have apparently produced no breakthroughs, and President Trump said on Tuesday China cannot be trusted and may stall the trade talks until after the 2020 presidential elections.

Chinese and US trade negotiators will reportedly meet again in the US in September.

Key near-term technical price levels were breached on the downside in corn and soybeans on Tuesday, which has the attention of the chart-based traders, most of whom are now looking to be on the sell side.

Drop below what was July low of $8.90 1/2 produced serious near-term chart damage and suggests sustained price downtrend
Drop below what was July low of $8.90 1/2 produced serious near-term chart damage and suggests sustained price downtrend

© Jim Wyckoff

The bearish bent in the grain futures markets this week has also emboldened the big speculative "fund" traders to take out fresh short positions in the grain futures markets.

Trade in the US grain markets could be choppy and sideways for the next two weeks, ahead of the all-important 12 August monthly USDA report, at which time the size of the US crops will be updated, as well as revised planted acres for US corn and soybeans.