Afternoon Soybeans: Beans need more acres.

The soybean market settled back over $15 in the old crop for the first time in three weeks following the bullish USDA stocks and acreage reports.  Beans traded firmer all morning leading into the report but spiked higher when both the quarterly stocks and planting intentions came up short of trade expectations.  

May beans settled 31 cents higher, July added 28 ½ cents and the new crop November gained 16 ¼ cents. The May-July spread settled at a new high with a 30 cent inverse. Beans gained on corn with the new crop ratio widening back out to 2.33%. For the week, beans gained 77 ¼ (SX gained 76 ¼) and for the month beans gained 15 cents. In the cash, CIF bean bids at the Gulf continued to firm adding another 3 cents to +111 (up 6 on the week) while domestic basis is mixed although today's rally on the board did clear out some resting hedge orders.

In the product trade, both meal (+$6.1) and oil (+1.12) rallied sharply with oil gaining slight ground in the oil share spread that settled at 37.3%. For the week, meal gained $20.9 and oil gained 2.22. On the month, meal lost $21.6 and oil lost 4.26. Board crush margins dropped by a nickel to $1.30/bushel.

Here's what the report said:

Soybeans stocks on March 1, 2023 totaled 1.69 bb, down 13% from March 1, 2022 and 50 mb below the average trade estimate. Soybean stocks stored on farms are estimated at 750 mb, down slightly from a year ago. Off-farm stocks, at 936 mb, are down 21% from last March. Indicated disappearance for the December 2022 - February 2023 quarter totaled 1.34 bb, up 11 percent from the same period a year earlier.

Soybean planted area for 2023 is estimated at 87.5 million acres, up slightly from last year, short of the average trade estimate of 87.5 million. Compared with last year, planted acreage is up or unchanged in 15 of the 29 estimating States.

The COT report showed managed fund money through the trade week ending 3/28 had +28.6k corn (net short 13.2k), -3.3k srw (net short 89.8k), +8.9k hrw (net long 237), -11.2k beans (net long 99.5k), -19k meal (net long 96.1k), and -6.7k oil (net short 12.4k).

Elsewhere in the news, Sources within Argentina's economics ministry, cited by reuters on Thursday afternoon, said the government is preparing another preferential soybean forex scheme for April in a bid to push exports

Buenos Aires Grain Exchange kept their 22/23 Argentina Soybean harvest projection steady at 25.0 mln mt in the latest weekly report. Argentina soybean crop ratings improved to 4% G/E and 67% P/VP vs. last week 2% G/E and 73% P/VP.

Buenos Aires Grain Exchange kept their 22/23 Argentina Sunflower harvest estimate at 3.9 mln mt, adding harvest was 77% complete. Yields are averaging 19.2 per hectare

The USDA's February census crush comes out on Monday after the close. The average trade guess on crush is 175.7 mb compared to the January crush of 191.1 which had 3 more days of processing. If realized this would be the largest February crush on record. Oil stocks were estimated on average at 2.339 bln lbs down from 2.356 bln lbs in January.

Soybean Basis:
Location Spot
US Gulf up 3 to +111
Sioux City, IA up 35 to +35n
Mankato, MN steady -5k
Decatur, IL steady +35k
Claypool, IN steady +30k
Columbus, OH off 15 to opt price n