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March 19, 2020  03/19/20 11:10:33 AM

It hasn’t been a very good start to the new year.  You are all aware of the price decline in the grain markets, health concerns with the coronavirus, and oil production debates in parts of the world. 
Like it or not here’s my soap box thoughts.  Closing down a lot of the US economy seems a little extreme.  The economic impact will be felt for several years. Toilet paper and dust mask shortages!  It’s a repeat of the run on the banks back in 1929!   Investments down 1/3 from just a month ago.  I just can’t imagine the amount of money lost by the host cities for the NCAA tournaments let alone all the other entertainment businesses.  As of yesterday, 8000 US cases of corona and 145 deaths.  It’s not good.  But car accidents kill roughly 102 people a day in the US.  I heard today that the big 3 auto companies are closing production plants which will help this figure.  Since 2010 the common flu has killed between 12k and 60k a year.  How many people are murdered each day?  2018 statistics puts it at around 46 per day.  And what about the abortion rate.  The swine flu in 2009 killed just over 12k US citizens.  Do you remember the chicken little story?  Have we as a nation overreacted just a little?  The media gets all the credit! 
The demand for gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel hasn’t helped sections of the economy.  Good for the commuter but not for everyone.  Corn basis getting hammered at all ethanol plants as they are -50 cents/bushel in the red at currant prices.  Basis has dropped 30 cents at the local ethanol plants in less than a week.  Some will be slow or even stop production until margins get better.  Which in turn will increase corn carryout.  Not good for flat price.  Today we are seeing some export business getting done.  Low prices tend to bring out buyers.  Surprisingly bean basis is hanging on.  Livestock have to eat every day.  Waiting time at the processors hasn’t gotten any shorter.  The African Swine Fever is still causing feed demand concerns in China.    Hopefully we are at or near the bottom.    
The USDA will release their March 1st stocks and prospective plantings guesses at 11:00 am on March 31st.  The Brazilian bean crop has been good.  Some areas had record yields.  The corn crop has also been good and the 2nd crop corn is getting planted.  Some Argentina crop production areas have been on the dry side.  Their production numbers won’t be as good. Our spring planting and summer weather will both be traded at sometime this year. 
The board has approved the purchase of a new 30k gallon LP tank.  Installation we start in June. 
One last comment.  A customer walks into a convenience store to order a sandwich.  The clerk asks him if he placed his order on line or by phone.  He tells the clerk no.  The clerk tells him he can’t just walk up to the counter and order a sandwich with the stores current policy on the coronavirus.  Standing in front of the clerk, he pulls out his phone, calls the store, and orders the sandwich.  How stupid!!!
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