GRAIN HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

TOP STORIES:

Wheat Futures Stretch Gains as Russian Prices Rise

Wheat for December delivery on the Chicago Board of Trade on Friday rose 3.4% to $5.75 a bushel, the highest close since March, after an uptick in wheat prices out of the Black Sea area. Soybeans for November delivery rose 1.5% to $ 10.43 1/2 a bushel. Corn for December delivery rose 0.9% to $3.78 1/2 a bushel. Russian wheat prices rose to $235 to $ 240 a ton, according to AgResource. The grain has seen strong demand from importers. In addition, "Black Sea farmers are reluctant to add to cash sales amid severe dryness and as optimal winter-wheat-seeding windows begin to close in early October," AgResource said.

USDA to Expand Coronavirus Assistance for Farmers and Ranchers -- Market Talk

09:46 ET - President Trump is allocating an additional $14B in aid for agricultural producers affected by Covid-19, the USDA announced Friday. "We listened to feedback received from farmers, ranchers and agricultural organizations about the impact of the pandemic on our nations' farms and ranches, and we developed a program to better meet the needs of those impacted," says Agricultural Secretary Sonny Perdue. Aid was originally distributed to farmers under the CARES Act passed in late March. Signups for the extension begin Sept. 21, the USDA says. Payments will be based on 2020 planted acres of cash crops including corn, wheat, soybeans, or maximum inventories of livestock in the case of livestock producers. (kirk.maltais@wsj.com; @kirkmaltais)

STORIES OF INTEREST:

Beyond Meat's Margins May Get Beaten in Price War -- Market Talk

12:00 ET - Beyond Meat isn't only competing with pure-play alternative meat companies domestically and abroad, it's also up against larger packaged-foods companies in the traditional animal-meat space. Given the competition, Beyond Meat is likely to assert lower prices in a bid to reach price parity, especially with traditional meat players, CFRA Research says. "We now find it difficult to believe BYND's margins will exceed its packaged food peers," the firm says. CFRA cuts Beyond Meat to sell, lowers margin projections for the company and slashes its price target to $100 from $130 a share. Beyond slides 6.5% to $147. (kimberly.chin@wsj.com; @mskimberlychin)

THE MARKETS:

Cattle Futures Finish Higher -- Market Talk

15:24 ET - Live cattle futures finished 0.5% higher, closing at $1.1185 per pound. It's the highest that cattle futures have traded in roughly a month. Cattle slaughters are expected to drop significantly this weekend -- with slaughters Friday and Saturday both expected to be lower than last week and this time last year. Meanwhile, lean hog futures finished today down 0.2% to 63.525 cents per pound, reversing course after starting today higher. (kirk.maltais@ wsj.com; @kirkmaltais)


  (END) Dow Jones Newswires
  09-18-20 1740ET
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