GRAIN HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

TOP STORIES:

Soybeans Slide as Streak of Chinese Sales End

Soybeans for November delivery fell 1.4% to $10 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade Thursday, falling below $10 per bushel intraday as the streak of USDA reporting of export sales to China ended. Corn for December delivery fell 1.4% to $3.63 1/2 a bushel. Wheat for December delivery rose 0.1% to $5.49 3/4 a bushel. The streak of flash sales of U.S. agriculture to China came to an end today, one factor pulling soybean futures below the $10 per bushel mark intraday Thursday. "I am afraid the streak has been broken as there were no new sales in the daily reporting system, but we continue to pile up the numbers in the weekly report," said Dan Hueber of the Hueber Report. At its highest point of nearly $10.50 per bushel, the most recent rally put soybean futures at their highest levels since May 2018. Today's weekly export sales report came in stronger than expected for soybeans, but traders focused more on the end of the streak.

Darden Reports 1Q Profit Even As Sales Remain Down

Darden Restaurants Inc. brought back its dividend even though demand remained weaker in its latest quarter across its portfolio of restaurants due to the challenges of the pandemic. The operator of Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse and other outlets said Thursday profit fell for its fiscal-first quarter that ended Aug. 30 to $36.1 million, or 28 cents a share, from $170.6 million, or $1.37 a share, the year earlier.

Agriculture Groups Call for Coronavirus Help, Warn of Risks for Workers -- Market Talk

1616 ET - The agriculture industry appealed to the Trump administration for help securing resources to deal with the spread of coronavirus among farm employees and rural communities. Dozens of farm groups in a letter to the White House coronavirus task force called for the ability to use FEMA trailers or RV's to house and quarantine agricultural workers, as well as access to additional testing. The groups said that in some regions, results from coronavirus tests can take nearly two weeks, boosting the risk of disease spread and potentially delaying farm productivity. Agricultural workers have been among those most affected by the virus in major US farm states, and the groups warned that "the agricultural workforce remains at heightened risk of infection." (jesse.newman@wsj.com; @jessenewman13)

STORIES OF INTEREST:

Kellogg Reducing Food Waste By Donating, Switching Uses

Kellogg Co. said Thursday that since 2016, it has reduced its total organic waste by 13.4% and total waste per pound of food produced by 5.7%. The food company said that in 2019, just 1.1% of food handled across its manufacturing operations went unused globally, which was provided to local food banks and farmers for animal feed.

Weather Doesn't Look to Hurt US Harvest -- Market Talk

13:16 ET - The US harvest doesn't appear to have any threats coming to it by way of weather in the Corn Belt. "The Central US forecast features spotty showers across the Eastern Midwest during the first half of next week but otherwise threats to harvest progress are lacking," AgResource says. Cooler temperatures are expected next week, but no freezes are anticipated, the firm says. "Freezing temps are not expected outside of North Dakota and far northern Minnesota and Wisconsin," AgResource says. CBOT. (kirk.maltais@wsj.com; @kirkmaltais)

IGC Cuts Corn Production Forecasts by 6 Million Metric Tons

The global corn harvest will be smaller than expected next year, the International Grains Council said Thursday, as it lowered its forecast for the global grain harvest. The intergovernmental body lowered its predictions for the 2020-21 corn harvest by 6 million metric tons to 1.16 billion tons. The reduced figure was due to smaller-than-expected harvests in the U.S., China, and the EU, which outweighed an upward revision to forecast for Argentina and Brazil.

THE MARKETS:

Livestock Futures Close Mixed -- Market Talk

15:01 ET - Livestock futures trading on the CME closed mixed -- with the most-active hog futures contract closing down 1.7% to 63.275 cents per pound, while cattle futures rose 1% to $1.12275 per pound. Export sales of US pork were relaxed in this week's report, totaling 37,800 metric tons -- down 25% from the same time last week. China was not the main buyer this week, with Mexico purchasing 15,000 tons. However, pork cutout prices are higher over the course of the past five days, rising 2.5% in that time period. (kirk.maltais@wsj.com, @kirkmaltais)


  (END) Dow Jones Newswires
  09-24-20 1759ET
  Copyright (c) 2020 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

News, commentary and research reports are from third-party sources unaffiliated with Fidelity. Fidelity does not endorse or adopt their content. Fidelity makes no guarantees that information supplied is accurate, complete, or timely, and does not provide any warranties regarding results obtained from their use.