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Market Plus: Nov 23, 2007: Market Analyst Sue Martin

posted on November 23, 2007

Market Plus: Nov 23, 2007: Market Analyst Sue Martin Pearson: This is the Friday, November 21st, 2007 version of market plus. We're so glad you've joined us here at our Market to Market Website. With us this week one of our senior analysts, Sue Martin, and Sue, soybean market has been interesting to watch. We haven't had prices this strong since, you know, I was really in junior high school so this is almost like a whole new era for some of us and yet there are people who were saying, have been on this show and have said we haven't seen anything yet with soybean prices. There are others out there who are saying this is, the high is in, we're going to start backing the market off now, you know, we're going to start choking off demand, we're rationing supply. Sort it out for us, Sue, what do you think is going to happen?

Martin: Well, I think, Mark, that the market has the potential to still move on further. But I think before we go much higher you've taken this market since the August 16th low which is your harvest low basis the Jan. and March beans up over $2.73 on the March contract. I think that we've had a pretty nice rally. $10.99 was your 1988 highs for a lead month and no market has been over that since then. Now, I'm not saying that you aren't going over it, I think you probably will. But I think that this market is getting most everything in and the story is so believable that I sense that there is probably a little bit of a correction coming here. However we fill into December, if we rally into December then I think we sell off into January. If we break into December which could be the most friendly thing that we could do, if we sell off into December around the 15th to the 18th then I think we put a low in and then we're back off into working our way higher and it may take into January to get the highs taken out. But ultimately I think we'll take the highs out. In the past 47 years we have had I think it is not 47, 37 years we have had seven times in which the bean market with the March contract has had highs made in November that were higher than they were in the previous spring and summer. And in all of those the market, two of them did top the market in November and the other five tended to have a little bit of a correction, some as much as 60%. Do we see something like that this year? I don't think so because I don't think China is done buying. But the other one would be that if you do an average of those five years where you went on to make higher highs and maybe do a 35% retracement back. Doing that could take beans back to about $10.07, $10.08, $10.06 on the March contract, well that's nearly $1 break. The last break that you had in this market which only lasted eight trading days from high to low was 93 cents. so, the market could be capable of doing something very quick and then coming right back out of it and being good. The thing is with the dollar being down like it is a quick break in the market would also instill good demand overseas. The one thing I am curious about is that USDA has us targeted for less bean exports this year and that's only natural. If you didn't produce them you can't export them. But usually you judge your demand market by that first quarter of the year and while demand has been good with China we still maybe aren't that much ahead or even ahead of a year ago. So, that is one concern that we do have. Now, South America increasing 8%, if that is what they indeed get done still probably isn't really enough. It puts burden on us to come back and also produce more. But the thing is if you have a weather problem which could come about and it's just kind of starting to hint at it that, if you have a weather issue in South America, and they're going to account for 67% of the world's exports on beans, if that occurs you're going to have a bean Armageddon. This market will explode, you'll take out $12.90 and if you take out $12.90, the all-time high for a lead month, I don't think it's the July contract that does it, I think it'll be the May contract that does it. And if that occurs you'll probably have beans then moving on up towards $16, possible $18.

Pearson: Okay, well, on that note what about, Sue, on livestock, you talked about the hog market just briefly at the end of the show and frankly we don't have the independent producers out there watching this show like we used to. It's vertically integrated, we understand that, but the pork industry has such an impact on the rest of the meat sectors especially when you have kill rates that are this high, slaughter levels that are this high, they're huge, they exceed our actual USDA slaughter number currently. A, how are we keeping up the prices that we're keeping up? And B, what do you see going forward for the next quarter or two in this hog market?

Martin: Well, I think first off, we're not slowing our industry down here. What we're slowing down is Canadian industry and they're not going to ship the hogs here or even the cattle because the dollar relationship to the Canadian dollar doesn't behoove them do it and that's another reason why they're killing most of their meat up there. But they are going through a liquidation phase which tells us that before long we're going to see a lot higher feeder pig prices. That's one bad thing and there's not really a way to protect yourself against that. But on the fat price I think we've done an excellent job with the dollar bean down, we're exporting a lot of pork and that is part of the reason that the market has held together as well as it has and also the U.S. economy I think has been okay and pretty decent and I think we're consuming a lot of pork and beef and that has helped us hold together and also helped the cattle market being able to hang up as good as they have. We've had a lot of competition in the pork and poultry industry but I think we've reached some targets here this past week, you know, $50, $60 on December hogs was our third count to the down side and most markets when they reach those third counts they come springing out of there and low and behold the very next day we were limit up on hogs. Now, we've had a $5 move almost, pretty close, within just two days. But I sense this market isn't in a range affair, I think it's going to go higher so I think you're going to see a market that probably moves up and tries to go up towards the 59 cent area, maybe towards 60 and then you hit trouble there.

Pearson: Okay, so really this is more of a classic cyclical move then?

Martin: Very seasonal. Normally your lows will hit you around the November 10th, 11th timeframe. This one we did hit a low right in that area and that timeframe and then bounced to $54.80 and came back down, took the lows out, had everybody thinking it was over with and going on down further only to find that we did stop within the range of that third count a second time and now we've come out and taken the highs out of the interim rally. That's good, that's a good sign and I think we've got a reversal week going. I think the market looks good.

Pearson: Sue Martin, as usual, appreciate your insights. Appreciate you joining us here on market plus. And from all of us here on Market to Market thanks for being with us and have a great week.

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