The overall weather patterns remain quite favorable for developing corn and soybeans in most major growing areas of Brazil and Argentina. However, a turn to wet weather in parts of central Argentina has caused some issues with flooding. This will likely not be a major problem in the longer term, although more heavy rains are possible during the next seven days. There are some dryness concerns in southern Buenos Aires which is mostly a double-cropped soybean area following the wheat harvest.
Hot, dry weather in northeast Brazil (western Bahia) has stressed the soybean crop with some losses expected. However, the ridge causing this weather has promoted very favorable weather over approximately 90% of the soybean belt. This would be analogous to having hot, dry weather in the southeast U.S. while the Midwest has very favorable weather.
Continued dry weather with another round of low temperatures in the Southern Plains will cause some further stress to the dormant wheat crop in some western areas. It will likely come down to the weather this spring when the crop breaks dormancy. If some significant rain occurs the impact of cold, dry weather this fall and winter will be minimal. If it remains dry and turns hot, the impact of this weather will be magnified.
Our latest calculation of the sea surface temperature departure in the equatorial eastern pacific stands at plus 0.2 for the month of December. Our data has shown temperature departures very close to normal since May 2016. The talk of a developing La Nina last year has not verified and most government agencies are now backing off of a La Nina event occurring.
Michael Palmerino can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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