Elaine Kub

Contributing Analyst
Elaine Kub

Elaine Kub is the author of Mastering the Grain Markets: How Profits Are Really Made -- a 360-degree look at all aspects of grain trading, which draws on her experiences as a futures broker, market analyst, grain merchandiser, and farmer. She grew up on a family farm in South Dakota and holds an engineering degree and an MBA.

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More From This Author

  • The latest U.S. Drought Monitor shows large regions plagued by expanding drought, some of which overlap with major wheat-producing regions. (USDA graphic)

    Kub's Den

    Wheat conditions highlight the "haves" and "have-nots" across America's crop fields this spring, with luscious green fields in the Midwest but very poor development in the drought-stricken West and High Plains.

  • Although there is no greater likelihood of "up" days than "down" days after a Grain Stocks report release, on average the movements do tend to be larger on March 31 than other report dates. (Illustration by Elaine Kub)

    Kub's Den

    Since 1984, USDA has kept meticulous metadata about price reactions in agricultural markets after certain government report releases. This should reassure market participants there is no predictable pattern in market reactions.

  • Several times in past years (2009, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014), old-crop corn in the summer has been worth more than new-crop corn in the upcoming winter. The record high inversion happened in July 2013. (Chart by Elaine Kub)

    Kub's Den

    Past examples of wild old-crop-to-new-crop corn futures spreads make speculation tempting, but there are few other ways for a farmer, who's sold out of old-crop grain, to take advantage of the hot near-term prices.

  • More volatility in the futures markets makes an insurance company's calculations more uncertain, demanding higher premiums in 2021 than in recent years. (Chart by Elaine Kub)

    Kub's Den

    Before much is known about an upcoming row crop growing season, new-crop futures prices for corn tend to be less than $4, and for soybeans, less than $10 per bushel. But already for 2021, cognitive biases may be at work...

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    Eager buying interest is still present for lean hog futures at fresh contract highs Friday morning, and the cattle contracts are higher too.

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    The weekly export-sales report was generally disappointing for the beef and pork markets, but live cattle and lean hog futures traders have largely shrugged it off in favor of a mixed open.

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    Lean hog futures are still attracting enough buying interest to set fresh contract highs Wednesday morning, but cattle futures are moderately lower.

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    Livestock futures have started Tuesday morning mostly lower in anticipation of volatility in the feed grains sector, but there may be enough bullish momentum on the charts, and supportive fundamentals from meat prices, to prevent...

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    Monday morning live cattle futures are mixed, feeder cattle futures lower and lean hog futures are already setting new contract highs.

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    Confident buyers of lean hog futures were still present at the open Friday morning, but live cattle and feeder cattle futures seem to be pulling back from past gains.

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    Bullish export sales emphasized the bullish underpinnings of the pork market, and thus, the support this week for lean hog futures.

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    Futures traders have been eager buyers in the livestock sector so far Wednesday morning, led by the rallying lean hog futures exploring fresh contract highs.

  • The size of ETF positions in the agricultural commodity markets is overwhelmingly dwarfed by the participation of bona fide hedgers, but some smaller markets could theoretically become vulnerable to the internet-fueled fads of $0 commission traders. (Graphic by Elaine Kub)

    Kub's Den

    With enough planning and motivation, a group of internet commenters probably could influence the price of oat futures up or down for a while, but they likely can't get enough access to the most vulnerable markets in large enough...

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    The packing industry continues to bring through large daily numbers of both hogs (495,000 projected Tuesday) and cattle (119,000 projected Tuesday), and find supportive prices for the pork and beef.

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    The implications from a bullish Cattle Inventory report, released Friday afternoon, are giving cattle futures traders a reason not to follow the steep losses seen at the end of last week's trade.

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell Livestock

    Traders of livestock futures are maintaining a cautious tone Friday morning, refusing to stick their necks out for either more erosion in prices or any serious attempt at regaining the highs from the start of the week.

  • New-crop 2021 cash grain bids are less impressive than the bullishness experienced in nearby futures, yet may still be very attractive to growers in areas with good yield prospects. (Graphic by Elaine Kub)

    Kub's Den

    More so than most years, pre-harvest hedging activity in the early months of the year will likely be influenced by fears and uncertainties regarding yield prospects in dry areas of the country.

  • From a total supply of 4.66 billion bushels of 2020-21 soybeans, the supply reported in the Quarterly Grain Stocks report fell to 2.93 billion bushels as of Dec. 1, 2020. (Chart by Elaine Kub)

    Kub's Den

    The U.S. has been using up soybeans at a blazing pace since harvest, but soybean disappearance commonly slows down through the winter, spring and summer months -- especially as the market looks forward to South American supplies.