In the 1960s, the global population was about 3 billion people. During this time, industrialization was catching up in countries in Europe and Asia. At the same time, European countries were working towards expanding their empires in Africa.
Fast forward to today. The global population has surged to more than 7 billion people. This increase has led to more demand for many commodities. For example, since these people need to dress, it has led to increased demand for cotton and since they need to eat, the demand for agricultural commodities like corn and soybeans has increased.
At the same time, earth has not increased in size. The increase in population has led to more division of land to create room for towns, cities, and homes.
To cope up with the demand, agricultural companies have increased the use of technology to make farming easier. Other companies have come up with the genetically modified plants, albeit all have not embraced their use.
Corn is one of the most important agricultural commodities in the world. It is the main staple food crop for many countries. Together with rice, millet, and sorghum, they are responsible for 60% of all energy intake in the world. Japan is the world’s leading importer of corn.
In the United States, corn has found itself in spotlight recently. In the United States, corn is a major industry with most corn coming from the Heartland region, which includes Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Missouri. Most of the corn from the United States is exported to Mexico.
Recently, a major debate happening in the country is about NAFTA which Trump has vowed to either fix or exit. Such a scenario may have dire consequences for the price of corn. However, it is unlikely that Trump will exit because of the implications to his base.
As shown below, the price of corn has been on the decline in the past five years. This decline has been associated with high yields as a result of better plant and mechanical technology.
To be clear, while easyMarkets provides corn futures to traders we do not recommend them to new traders. These trades require adequate knowledge and experience in the sector. They also require extensive understanding of how to interpret COT data and data from USDA.
As seen below, in the past year, the price of a bushel of corn peaked at $403 and started coming down to a low of $334. The commodity is now trading in a narrow range as it seeks to establish direction. Part of the reason for the decline is the price of crude oil. Remember, crude oil is used in large scale production.
Going forward, the price of corn may remain under pressure if the price of crude oil keeps on rising. Further, the NAFTA negotiations may play a part on its pricing.
As shown, corn futures are trading at the 20-day moving average which is an indication that little movement is happening. The commodities channel index is currently at the 29 level. Therefore, these indicators show that markets may wait and see before making any moves.
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