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Paragon Commentary

Futures File: Wet Weather & Paris Climate Accord

Jun 02, 2017

Weather Worries Farmers

This spring was one of the wettest on record, drenching Midwestern fields and slowing down spring planting.

At this point, corn and soybean planting is still nearing complete, but is a bit behind schedule. Even as the final acres are planted, some producers are worried about the condition of the corn and soybean crops. Plants that develop during a wet spring typically don’t build a deep root system, which can make them especially susceptible to dry weather if it hits later in the summer.

However, summer precipitation is forecast to be normal, although Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio could have warmer than typical weather, which could stress the crops.

For now, the futures markets are focusing on the relative abundance of grains left over from last year and the prospect for another large harvest this fall. The huge stockpiles have pushed soybean prices to a 13-month low near $9.00 per bushel while corn prices continue to languish under $4.00 per bushel.

 

Trump Says Au Revoir to Paris Accord

On Thursday, President Trump announced that the United States would pull out of the Paris climate accord. The treaty, signed by President Obama and 194 other United Nations members, was designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate the effects of global warming.

Citing U.S. economic interests, President Trump stated Thursday that the U.S. would withdraw from the agreed-upon deal and attempt to renegotiate the United States’ commitment.

Other signers of the deal, including the European Union and China, have indicated they will hold fast on their pledges.

For futures traders, Trump’s announcement was met with swift selling of crude oil and natural gas futures on the expectation that loosened environmental regulations would increase domestic fossil fuel production. Oil fell to a three-week low under $47 per barrel, while natural gas sank near a three-month low under $3.00 per million British thermal units.

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