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Market Plus: Jul 17, 2009: Tomm Pfitzenmaier, Markey Analyst

posted on July 17, 2009

Market Plus: Jul 17, 2009: Tomm Pfitzenmaier, Markey Analyst Pearson: This is the Friday, July 17th, 2009 version of Market Plus. We're glad you've joined us here at our Market to Market Web site, one of our regular market analysts with us this week, Tomm Pfitzenmaier, always has some great insights. Tomm, we talked on the show about a big corn crop and everybody that I've talked to, everybody you've talked to they're all saying huge plant populations out there this year, big chunk particularly in the western Corn Belt is perfect conditions, eastern Corn Belt somewhat late but has caught up dramatically. You've heard the same things I've heard, 160 bushel corn average, maybe 170, that will be a lot of corn bushels. This has a potential, again depending on what happens in August, but we have the potential for a massive corn crop this year. What should producers be thinking about?

Pfitzenmaier: Well, number one I mentioned on the show rallies back up in that $3.45 area I think you need to use those to get caught up on some sales. If you haven't made any sales be more aggressive. We're going to have the crop pollinated and once you get through that it's pretty tough to kill the crop off. So, I think you need to use that, if you're going to store that crop you want to take advantage of your bin there's fairly good carry out to July about 33 cents right now. If it gets out to 36 to 40 cents then you want to sell that carry and let that bin make you some money to store that crop. Now, don't just sit there and say, again, like I said on the cattle, hope it happens, actually do something and take advantage of it. Again, option strategies if you're an optimist and think there's still some up side buy $3, $3.40, $3.20 put, some kind of a put to give you a floor because if we have a 2 to 3 billion bushel carry out which is what those big yields would translate to you're going to have sub $2 corn and so there is huge down side potential under certain scenarios. So, a guy wants to get some coverage there to protect against that. Now, a lot of the guys have insurance packages that are guaranteeing them substantially higher prices so that's going to offset a lot of that for most people.

Pearson: But, again, if you want to take your money from the marketplace this is the chance to get that done and it only enhances that insurance payment.

Pfitzenmaier: Absolutely.

Pearson: As we look at this thing and as we look at what demand could conceivably wind up to you mentioned the lower feed demand on the show and you also talked about this cattle market. I was out in Denver, as I mentioned, at the Cattlemen's annual summer gathering and people were really upbeat out there about what futures were telling them. You're saying don't just stand here, take advantage of that October fat cattle markets when they get mentioned.

Pfitzenmaier: There's a couple of things going on here. When cattlemen see those higher deferred contracts they have a tendency to hold, put more weight on the cattle and then you get cheap corn on top of that and that just magnifies that. So, the old saying the numbers won't kill you but the tonnage will, well that's why that scenario takes place here is you have higher deferreds, cheap corn, putting more weight on, all of a sudden a hole turns into a hump, as they say. So, you've got to take advantage of those higher prices when they come along. Maybe if you're an optimist and you think we're going to $100 cattle because the economy is so wonderful then maybe just buy yourself a put. But do something here and not just sit and watch it fall away from you.

Pearson: You mentioned the fact there's a lot of protein out there. The story this week Tyson selling off almost a quarter of their pork production, not that it's going to necessarily go away but they're getting out of it. We're seeing some of this other consolidation, some growers out there who are not going to get their contracts renewed and so forth. You've been talking about the supply side being in order for some time but now it looks like it's starting to intensify on the hog side.

Pfitzenmaier: Yeah, I think the hog thing is trying to bottom here. I don't think we're shooting straight out of here but I'd guess those mid-50s are pretty well going to hold prices on hogs so it's just a matter of kind of hanging in here and taking advantage of those price rallies when they come along.

Pearson: All right, but don't be sitting on your hands, take some action. Tomm Pfitzenmaier, as usual we appreciate your insights. Thank you for joining us here this week on Market to Market and right here on Market Plus. A quick reminder, right now is a critical time if you just enjoy us on the Internet and you'd like to watch the show live on your local public television station by all means contact your local program director and say, I love to watch Market to Market, I see portions of it on the Internet and I'd like to see the entire show live and ask your public television program director right now because now is the time these decisions are being made. So, contact your local public television programmer and if they are carrying Market to Market call them and say thank you, I appreciate it, it adds dollars to my bottom line. From all of us here on Market to Market and for Tomm Pfitzenmaier, I'm Mark Pearson. Have a great week.

Tags: agriculture commodity prices markets news