Last month, insurance companies said they would add war risk to the ships in the Black Sea as of January 1st. Last week, the cost to charter a freighter to or from the Black Sea was up more than 20% as insurance companies did what they said they would do. Freight rates from Black Sea to China went from $68 to $82 per mt. That price increase will go a long way to make US wheat and corn more competitive in the world marketplace. Did you notice the US wheat basis firmed last week? There was a reason for that.
Asian markets opened smartly higher today buoyed by Wall Street's 700 point gain on Friday, rising hopes of a “not so bad” recession for the US economy, and China's “Zero-Covid” policy came to an absolute end Sunday. China is going to gut-it-out with Covid infections and expect that, within a matter of weeks, herd immunity will begin to bring an end to Covid. All of this is good news for beans and crude oil.
If you have been watching our daily ten day rain forecasts for the bean areas of South America, you already know the northern bean growing areas of Brazil have been getting mostly ten out ten days rains. In that sandy soil, 10 straight days of rain will produce more beans than rain 8 or 9 days out of 10.