By Bob Stark, Agricultural Economist
The Arkansas 2015 soybean crop cash market traded slightly higher over the first full trading week of 2016. An 18 cent loss over the extended New Year’s Day weekend was reversed with gains for most of the week. Trading opened on Monday at a statewide average of $8.63 and posted an 8 cent gain on Wednesday before leveling off to a closing mark of $8.72 on Friday, a loss of 9 cents from the previous Wednesday early closing mark (Figure 1). High daily individual market price of the past trading week was $9.00 reported on both Thursday and Friday by Helena, the only individual market quotes at the $9.00 level in the week. Low market quote for the week was found at Wynne with the market at $8.37 on Tuesday. Blytheville continued missing from old crop cash quotes among the fourteen state markets. End-of-the-week quotes saw closing day prices ranging from an $8.45 low at Wynne to the $9.00 high at Helena. The ending quotes represented a range of 55 cents, one cent wider than the previous trading week.
The 2016 New Crop Soybean Cash Market Booking price tracked flatter than the old crop cash market level. Bookings opened the first full 2016 week on Monday at a statewide average of $8.63, a decline of 16 cents from the shortened New Year’s Day holiday week. The market traded within a 3 cent range throughout the week before closing at $8.66, 13 cents below the early, end-of-year close of the previous week (Figure 2).
High market price of the first 2016 week was reported on Wednesday with both Old Town/Elaine and Helena at $8.84. The individual market daily low of the week occurred on Wednesday and Thursday at $8.32 as Augusta resumed providing daily price quotes. End-of-week individual market quotes on Friday ranged from a low of $8.34 at Augusta to the high of $8.84 at both Old Town/Elaine and Helena. These ending quotes put the closing spread at 50 cents across all reporting markets in the state, expanded from the pre-New Year’s Day early closing range of 35 cents. Readers should note that Augusta was not providing price quotes in the previous short week. Adjusting to an equivalent market set would show the range change as unchanged. Eleven markets currently are providing new crop booking quotes.
This week also represented the close of December trading. We examine the past month cash market trends in Figure 3 above. The month opened on December 1 with a statewide average of $8.95. Price saw two periods of gain followed each by substantial decline periods. The general trend for the month was lower. Weekly statewide averages through the month ranged from a low of $8.71 on December 16 and 28 to a high on December 4 of $9.14. Individual market daily reports ranged from a low of $8.40 at Wynne on December 16 to a high of $9.36 at Helena, Old Town/Elaine and Osceola on December 14. Here’s hoping for an improvement in 2016!
The beginning of this week also represented the close of the 2015 trading year. We examine the yearly cash market trends in Figure 4 above. Viewing the entire year graph reveals the extent of decline that generally persisted throughout 2015. The only major exception was the mid-June to mid-August period when price briefly climbed above the $10.00 level before declining back to its mid-June level and then continuing lower. The year saw soybean price hit a statewide daily average high of $10.23 on June 30. The low statewide daily average occurred on November 10 at $8.57. Individual market daily reports ranged from a low of $8.33 at Wynne on November 10 to a high of $10.47 at Old Town/Elaine on June 30. Here’s hoping for a turnaround in 2016!
(Market average prices stated in this report are unweighted averages of the state markets surveyed by NASS. Price data was based on USDA LR GR111 Arkansas Daily Grain Reports.)