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Natural gas price movements are mixed

Natural gas price movements are mixed. Prices at most market locations moved by 3¢ to 5¢ through the report week, with exceptions in the West, where above-average temperatures raised prices by more than 10¢ at some locations, and in the Northeast, where cooler weather brought double-digit price declines. Prices in the Rockies rose by a nickel or less, while at PG&E Citygate, serving Northern California, prices rose by 16¢, from $3.13/MMBtu last Wednesday to $3.29/MMBtu yesterday.


Beef prices generally fall

Choice boxed beef prices dropped again on Thursday, falling $2.51 to hit $250.27 on Thursday. The decrease brought the 27-day average price to $251.63. Select boxed beef prices also fell from $249.52 on Wednesday to $248.42 on Thursday. The $1.10 drop resulted in the 27-day average price settling at $244.80.

Choice primal loin prices saw a huge drop in prices on Thursday, falling $7.48 to hit $333.22. The massive increase brought the 27-day average price to $348.13. Choice primal round was the next highest fall, dropping $3.35 to hit $226.10. 


Net petroleum product exports continue to increase

Petroleum product exports averaged 4.1 million barrels per day (b/d) in the first four months of the year, the latest monthly data available. This was an increase of 0.5 million b/d over the same time last year. Product imports are also higher than last year, but to a lesser extent, leading to an increase in net petroleum product exports (Figure 1). Import and export patterns vary by region (Figure 2), with most exports leaving from the Gulf Coast (PADD 3), and imports coming to the East Coast (PADD 1). Record high refinery runs and increased global demand for petroleum products from the United States continue to push net exports higher.


BMC: Corn acreage by state (2014 vs. 2015)

The 2015 corn planted area for all purposes is estimated at 88.9 million acres, down 2 percent from last year. This represents the lowest planted acreage in the United States since 2010. Growers expect to harvest 81.1 million acres for grain, down 2 percent from last year. Farmers responding to the survey indicated that 98 percent of the intended corn acreage had been planted at the time of the interview, the same as the 10-year average.


Weather forecast favorable for much of U.S.

The July weather outlook from the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center suggests a large portion of the U.S. could have cooler-than-average temperatures and higher-than-average rainfall.

To go with that, the center does not forecast any drought development in the bulk of the U.S. for July and possibly beyond. However, the West Coast and California in particular appear to remain in drought weather and conditions.


Grain markets mostly lower early Thursday morning

The grain markets are mostly lower early Thursday morning ahead of the 4th of July holiday weekend. The agricultural markets will be closed on Friday July 3rd. Corn futures are softer after an eventful week capping off a quarter where nearby corn hit a high of $4.15 on Tuesday and a low of $3.48 on June 15th. The last time corn got that low was October 2014. In May 2014 nearby corn was trading in the 530 range. Volatility has remained a constant as supply and demand factors are ever changing. The US Dollar Index is down .05 to 96.26.


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