Climate scientists at NOAA’ National Centers for Environmental Information averaged the observations of rain, snow, and other precipitation from across the country, they found out it the country’s wettest May since records began 121 years ago. In fact, it was the wettest month ever recorded! Places that were wetter than average are shades of green, while places that were drier than average are shades of brown. As you can see across much of the middle of the country, rainfall was 200-300% of average. For more information about U.S. climate conditions, including temperature and extreme weather events, visit the website of the Monitoring Branch at NOAA’s National Center for Environmental Information.
Group says TPA is ‘key to successfully negotiating trade agreements’
Release Date: 2015-06-11
The American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) has strongly urged members of the House of Representatives in a letter to vote “yes” for Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), stating, “TPA is key to successfully negotiating trade agreements vital to the growth of the U.S. animal food industry.”
AFIA, which represents 75 percent of the commercial animal food produced in the U.S., explained the breadth of the feed industry, as it indirectly represents 70-plus percent of the cost of producing meat, milk and dairy products.
“With the passage of TPA — and subsequently new trade agreements down the line — the feed industry will have better access to growing global demands,” said Gina Tumbarello, AFIA director of international policy and trade.
Tumbarello noted last year alone the U.S. exported more than $10 billion worth of animal feeds, animal food ingredients and pet food.
“Passage of TPA sends a clear message to our trade partners that U.S. representatives have unambiguous authority to negotiate these agreements,” AFIA wrote. “TPA ensures negotiating partners have confidence in the United States’ ability to live up to the terms of any negotiated agreement because Congress cannot change the draft treaty prior to voting to approve or disapprove the deal.”
AFIA firmly believes a lack of TPA for this administration will likely scuttle other pending trade agreements, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the TransAtlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. If these agreements collapse, the U.S. loses new export market opportunities for agricultural products.
“We need trading rules developed on sound science — rules that create an equal, level playing field. Passage of TPA can provide that,” said Tumbarello.
TUESDAY, JUNE 09, 2015
U.S. investors are finding little reason to push stock prices higher as they face a myriad of unanswered questions both here at home and internationally. The Dow Jones is now in negative territory for the year following three consecutive weeks of declines. The recent pullbacks aren’t stemming from any new developments, rather they are spurred by growing anxiety as we get closer to next weeks Fed meeting and an overall lack of “motivational headlines” to attract new money needed to further fuel the bullish campaign. Greece and their EU counterparts are supposedly in talks that may kick the can out to March of 2016. Certainly this is not being viewed as a solution, but rather simply prolonging the inevitable. Traders also appear a bit more concerned about the Chi- nese “bubble” which continues to inflate. Not only will the trade this week be digesting several key Chinese economic numbers, but an event that many big money managers are monitoring is whether the MSCI will allow top yuan-denominated stocks into its influential Emerging Markets Index. From what I know, a lot of funds have reportedly been buying up select Chinese stocks ahead of this decision and the event has been very much hyped in the Chinese press, which in turn has a ton of Chinese retail investors placing long bets. The worry is if the answer ends up being “no”, a massive knee-jerk type selloff could en- sue, in turn sending shockwaves through the rest of global markets. On the flip side, a “yes” could provide major bullish enthusiasm. I believe the decision will be announced this evening after the market closes, so there could be some potentially odd market moves come Wednesday morning. Today here at home, we will see a more detailed look at the U.S. job market with the release of April JOLTS report. Analysts will mostly be looking at the number of jobs that are going unfilled, which indicates a lack of qualified candidates. That’s not necessarily “slack” in the labor, something the Fed is watching closely, but it is problematic for employers in that the only way to fill those positions may be to start up- ping the compensation. That in turn eventually adds to inflation, the other major card the Fed wants to see played before raising rates. As for crude oil, it seems the market is keep- ing a closer eye on Iran, believing they could quickly add new surplus to global supply if sanctions are lifted by the June 30th deadline. Something else I find interesting is the fact many U.S. shale producers are saying that OPEC’s strategy of flooding the market with “supply” is failing, because the low prices have simply forced the U.S. producer to become even more efficient…perhaps lower energy prices are here to stay for an extended period?
USDA says corn crop is well ahead of schedule
Release Date: 2015-05-19
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has released its latest Crop Progress report.
•Eighty-five percent of the nation’s corn crop is planted and 56 percent of it has emerged. On average at this time, 75 percent of the corn crop is planted and 40 percent emerged.
•Soybean planting is at 45 percent compared with the 36 percent average. Soybean emergence is 13 percent compared with a 12 percent average.
•Forty-five percent of the winter wheat crop was rated good or excellent, which was up 1 percent from the previous week.
•In Iowa, corn planting was 92 percent compared with the 84 percent average. Emergence was 63 percent compared with the 44 percent average. Soybean planting was at 51 percent compared with a 45 percent average.
•In Illinois, corn planting was 94 percent, compared with the 82 percent average. Soybean planting was 47 percent compared with a 36 percent average.
•In Indiana, corn planting was 74 percent, compared with the 68 percent average. Soybean planting was 36 percent compared with a 38 percent average.
AFIA’s Liquid Feed Symposium Heads to Minneapolis