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Highlights, Russia, Japan, Markets & Rain Days Update 6/20/22


The war for Ukraine is not going to end after Russia completes its quest to gain complete control of the Eastern Ukraine disputed Donbas-Luhansk area. NATO said the war will continue for two more years at the least. NATO will most certainly do their best to make sure the war does just that.

Russia’s military movements clearly show Ukraine’s second largest city, Kharkiv, in the extreme northeast part of the country, just 35 miles from the Russian border, is the next military objective as Russian forces are moving artillery equipment in position to shell the city again.

The US grain market does not give Japan the respect it deserves. Before China and Mexico became major buyers of US grains and soybeans, for decades, Japan was the number one importer of US farm produce. Their purchases got very little attention because Japan bought about 100,000 to 150,000 mt of various farm products every Thursday and they still do. They issue their shopping list early in the week for all prospective suppliers to submit their offer. On Thursday, Japan announces which offers they will accept and the process is repeated every week.

Because the Japanese business is routine, there is no publicity, whereas a country which does not do regularly scheduled business, their purchases make for highly reported business news.

And so, it is noteworthy the Japanese yen remained under pressure today, weakening near a 24 year low after the Bank of Japan on Friday reversed its policy of tightening the money supply (higher interest rates and larger bank reserve requirements to control inflation) back to an ultra-easy money policy (print more money, low interest rates, lower bank reserves requirements). The bank of Japan decided inflation is better than risking a recession. All they are doing is pouring gasoline on the inflation fire and it will take a more serious risk of recession in the future to bring inflation under control.

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