Todd Hultman

DTN Lead Analyst

Todd Hultman is a DTN grain market analyst, and has worked in the commodity futures industry since 1985.

 

Todd began his career as a broker with Delta Futures Group in Omaha, where he relied on DTN's news and market quotes. In 1997, he left the brokerage business with a desire to spend more time researching the futures markets and educating others. The move led to the creation of an online educational resource for futures traders. That same strong interest to research and teach brought a Todd to DTN where he enjoys commenting on the grain markets. Todd is a 1981 graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha and has lived in the Omaha area for most of his life.

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  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July corn closed up 11 cents Friday as the market bid front-month corn prices higher a second day. July contracts of soybeans and winter wheat were also higher on the day, facing adverse...

  • As 2019 corn prices go higher -- fueled by unusually harsh planting conditions -- the outlook for 2020 corn prices is becoming more bearish. (DTN ProphetX chart)

    Todd's Take

    Shrinking corn supplies and expanding soybean supplies in 2019 are setting up a bearish scenario for corn in 2020.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    With perpetual rain in the seven-day forecast, July contracts of corn, soybeans and all three wheats closed higher Thursday, expressing ongoing concerns about row-crop planting, crop conditions and the impending wheat harvest.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July soybeans closed up 18 3/4 cents and led most grains to a higher close with help from talk that USDA's crop estimate may be due for a haircut in July. July Chicago wheat was up 8 1/4 cents with ongoing concerns about too...

  • This chart shows price estimates from two possible scenarios discussed in the May 31 Todd's Take. This week considers some important influences that are not shown on the chart above. (DTN chart by Todd Hultman)

    Todd's Take

    There is no good way to estimate U.S. corn production just yet, but this is a good time to consider other important events happening around grain markets.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July corn overcame a lower start Thursday to finish up 5 3/4 cents, even though the forecast is allowing for some improved planting opportunities. The largest percentage gains were in all three U.S. wheats after central Oklahoma...

  • DTN Early Word Grains

    July corn is down 1 1/4 cents, July soybeans are down 5 1/2 cents and July KC wheat is up 3 1/2 cents.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July corn and soybeans ended with double-digit losses amid ongoing talk of a new tariff on Mexico and while some planting activity is getting a chance in the Western Corn Belt. July KC wheat was Wednesday's largest percentage...

  • DTN Early Word Grains

    July corn is down 9 1/2 cents, July soybeans are down 6 1/4 cents and July KC wheat is down 16 3/4 cents.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    One day after Monday's surprising rally in wheat, July contracts of all three wheat prices closed lower, completely erasing Monday's gain in the case of KC wheat. Corn and soybeans held on to small gains after USDA reported...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July contracts of all three wheats closed higher Monday, motivated by heavy unwelcome rain amounts in this week's forecast for HRW and SRW wheat areas. Row crops were lightly mixed with USDA's next planting progress estimates...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July contracts of corn, soybeans and all three wheats closed lower Friday, the opposite direction of how they ended for the week. Bullish concerns about planting conditions eased Friday and took a backseat to news that President...

  • This chart shows two possible scenarios for new-crop corn prices in 2019, the red arrow is a little bullish and the green arrow is extremely bullish. At this point, it is difficult to tell which one 2019-20 will finish closer to. (DTN chart by Todd Hultman)

    Todd's Take

    In an extremely difficult planting environment, I take a look at two possibilities of what this could mean for corn prices in 2019-20.

  • DTN Early Word Grains

    July corn is down 4 1/4 cents, July soybeans are down 2 3/4 cents and July KC wheat is down 4 1/2 cents.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Thursday's trade saw a resumption of higher prices throughout the grain sector, this time led by winter wheat as rain continues to be an unwelcome threat to crops in 2019. The persistent rally in corn took a toll on Thursday's...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Slow planting progress from Tuesday's Crop Progress report sent grain prices sharply higher early Wednesday, but by the end of the session corn and wheat finished lower, while the soy complex held positive gains.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    One day back from a three-day weekend and traders found no more reason to be optimistic about row-crop planting than they did Friday. July contracts of corn, soybeans and all three wheats finished sharply higher, led by a 4.2...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July contracts of corn, soybeans and all three wheats closed higher Friday and were higher on the week as corn planting difficulties persist in 2019. Outside markets were also mostly supportive for grains with the June U.S. dollar...

  • Six consecutive years of good weather, plus a trade dispute with China, has DTN's national index of cash soybean prices near its lowest level in 11 years. On Thursday, USDA offered a plan to help farmers, but the lack of details raises a lot of questions about just how helpful it will be. (DTN ProphetX chart)

    Todd's Take

    Under the guise of providing aid to farmers, USDA is requiring farmers to produce more for unspecified amounts. Is that good public policy?

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July contracts of corn and soybeans posted small gains Wednesday, but were down from higher levels in the morning when markets appeared more excited. Wheat prices finished mostly lower with July K.C. wheat down 6 3/4 cents.

  • (DTN photo by Greg Horstmeier)

    DTN Before The Bell Grains

    July corn was up 8 1/2 cents, July soybeans were up 15 3/4 cents, and July Kansas City (HRW) wheat was up 5 1/2 cents.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    The first half of Monday's trading session was dominated by news that China retaliated against Friday's tariff increases with higher tariffs of their own on $60 billion of U.S. goods. November soybeans were down nearly 18 cents at...

  • (DTN photo by Greg Horstmeier)

    DTN Before The Bell Grains

    July corn was down 7 cents, July soybeans were down 15 cents, and July Kansas City (HRW) wheat was down 3 cents.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Corn, soybeans and wheat prices all closed lower Friday after USDA estimated larger U.S. ending stocks for the new-crop season. July K.C. wheat had the most bearish response however, finishing down 10 3/4 cents at a new contract...

  • Under the premise of no trade agreement with China before this fall, U.S. ending soybean stocks surpass 1.0 billion bushels and a stocks-to-use ratio of roughly 26% to a cash soybean price below $6.00 a bushel -- not a pleasant thought for U.S. soybean producers. (DTN chart by Todd Hultman)

    Todd's Take

    It's not a pretty sight, but let's consider what soybean prices might look like, should there be no trade agreement with China.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Thursday's trade saw big losses in corn, soybeans, wheat and cotton as the U.S. government is set to increase tariffs on Chinese goods at 12:01 a.m. EDT. All other market concerns took a distant second place to the growing...

  • (Logo courtesy of USDA)

    USDA Reports Preview

    It's hard to believe, but here we are, looking at the start of another new crop season in the U.S. And that means it is time for the May WASDE report, due out Friday at 11 a.m. CDT.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July corn closed down 2 1/4 cents and July soybeans were down 3 1/2 cents, a mostly quiet day of trading with an extra hit of selling at the end. July wheat prices also ended slightly lower in light trade as crop prices anticipate...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July corn closed up 2 1/4 cents and July Minneapolis wheat was up 7 1/2 cents, both getting some support from their planting difficulties. July soybeans ended up 1/2 cent in quiet trade with a threat of new tariffs coming against...

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell-Livestock

    One day after finishing limit down on news that the U.S. is considering raising tariffs on Chinese goods, June hogs are sharply lower again Tuesday. June cattle are starting the day modestly higher.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Sunday's presidential tweets threatened more tariffs against Chinese goods and resulted in a broad swath of selling among U.S. stocks and commodities. By the close, July soybeans negotiated a 12-cent loss and June hogs were down...

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell-Livestock

    Both cattle and hogs are lower early Monday as nearly all commodities find themselves under pressure after President Donald Trump threatened China with more tariffs over the weekend.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July contracts of all three wheats were lower Friday with Chicago down 6 cents and Minneapolis down 5 3/4 cents. Trading volume was light in corn and soybeans as traders largely ignored weather concerns on Friday and opted to...

  • (DTN photo by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Before The Bell-Livestock

    Outside markets are friendly for livestock early Friday with Dow Jones futures up 173 points and other commodities mixed. The U.S. Labor Department said nonfarm payrolls were up 263,000 in April, more than expected.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July contracts of corn and all three wheats closed higher again Thursday with Chicago wheat emerging as the percentage leader, facing a wet forecast. July soybeans fell lower for a fifth consecutive day, unable to find support in...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July contracts of corn and all three wheats closed higher Wednesday with corn starting to show some concern about planting conditions. July oats led percentage gains among grain related contracts, experiencing slow planting...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July soybeans continued their downward spiral Tuesday, finishing 6 3/4 cents lower at a new contract low of $8.54. July Chicago wheat also found a new contract low, ending down 6 1/2 cents after USDA raised its good-to-excellent...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July soybeans dropped 6 1/4 cents and KC wheat was down 10 1/2 cents, both reaching new contract lows at the close. July corn ended up a half-cent with plenty of planting challenges ahead in 2019.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July corn gained 4 cents Friday, helped by a wet forecast that leads into early May. July Chicago wheat was up a penny, but other crops did not fare as well with July soybeans losing 5 3/4 cents and July KC wheat down 4 cents.

  • At a time when grain-related contracts are under a siege of heavy noncommercial selling and bearish fundamental concerns abound, soybean meal prices are holding above long-term support and noncommercials are actually slightly net long. (DTN ProphetX chart)

    Todd's Take

    One grain-related contract appears to be immune from all the bearish happenings.

  • DTN Early Word Grains

    July corn is up 1 1/4 cents, July soybeans are down 2 3/4 cents and July KC wheat is up 1 3/4 cents.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July contracts of corn, soybeans and two of the three wheats ended with small gains Thursday, a break after several days of lower prices. July soybean meal was the percentage leader among grain-related contracts, finishing up...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    July contracts of corn, soybeans and two of three wheats fell to new lows Wednesday as the bearish rout of crop prices continues. Only July Chicago wheat stayed above its March low, but was also lower for the day, down 6 1/2...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Both old-crop and new-crop soybean prices fell to their lowest closes in seven months Tuesday, succumbing to noncommercial selling and concerns about record ending supplies. July corn fell 3 1/4 cents lower while all three wheats...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Both old-crop and new-crop corn prices along with two of the three July wheat contracts fell to new contract lows on Monday as spring weather starts to look a little more favorable in 2019. May soybeans were also lower with...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    After starting the day with bearish export numbers for soybeans and wheat, and faced with Thursday's higher U.S. dollar, markets showed little response. Corn and soybeans finished slightly higher, while the three U.S. wheats ended...

  • As of April 9, CFTC data showed 43% of noncommercial traders on the long side of corn, the most bearish sentiment for this time of year since 2002. (DTN ProphetX chart)

    Todd's Take

    You have to go back to 2002 for corn and 2001 for soybeans to find a time when speculators were this bearish in the second week of April.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May soybeans fell 9 cents and November soybeans were down 8 3/4 cents -- both at their lowest closes in 2019 -- reflecting anticipation of record-high ending soybean stocks in 2018-19. May corn was slightly lower, while July...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Among grain-related contracts, only oats were higher Tuesday as the rest of sector suffered larger-than-usual losses, led in percentage terms by a 14 3/4-cent drop in July Chicago wheat. A combination of noncommercial selling and...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May contracts of corn and soybeans ended a little higher Monday after a weekend of heavy rain, snow and tornadoes, primarily in the eastern half of the U.S. Winter wheat contracts fell lower, erasing Friday's gains with another...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Price movement in grains was so quiet Friday it felt like traders stayed home, until May contracts of Chicago and KC wheat pushed higher in the final minutes, ending up 4 cents and up 3 3/4 cents, respectively. Row crops stayed...

  • The weekly corn chart and three-month measure of range volatility (dark red line) shows how trading has narrowed since last summer, as it seasonally tends to do. After reaching its lowest volatility in February since 1994, this unusually quiet market is apt to turn more volatile, starting in May. (DTN ProphetX chart)

    Todd's Take

    Trading in corn has been especially quiet this winter, but the more volatile season is about to begin.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May contracts of corn and soybeans finished lower Thursday in quiet trade after USDA reported disappointing export sales for last week. All three wheat prices finished higher with adverse weather offering some threat to SRW...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    USDA came out with estimates of higher-than-expected ending corn and wheat stocks in Tuesday's report, but grain prices showed no sign of panic. May corn and soybeans were unchanged, while May contracts in all three wheats...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May corn fell back 2 1/2 cents as traders anticipate an increase in USDA's estimate of ending U.S. corn stocks in Tuesday's WASDE report. May soybeans ended a quarter-cent lower in quiet trading and two of three wheats were...

  • USDA will release World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) and Crop Production reports on Tuesday, April 9, at 11 a.m. CDT. (Logo courtesy of USDA)

    USDA Reports Preview

    What to expect from USDA's April 9 World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May soybeans took back all but a quarter-cent of Thursday's gain after the U.S. and China reported no significant progress coming out of this week's trade meetings. May corn and all three wheats were also lower Friday, while the...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May soybeans closed up 7 3/4 cents Thursday while traders were left to wonder if a Thursday afternoon meeting between President Trump and China's vice premier will offer some form of bullish encouragement that a trade deal...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May Minneapolis wheat fell 11 1/4 cents to a new contract low of $5.41 3/4 Tuesday in spite of USDA's lower-than-expected planting estimate and flooding around the Dakotas. Otherwise, Tuesday saw small gains in soybeans and Chicago...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May corn closed up 5 1/4 cents, the biggest percentage gainer among grains on Monday, a day that saw most commodities finish higher. May soybeans were up 11 1/4 cents with U.S.-China trade talks expected to continue later this week.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May corn fell 17 1/2 cents Friday, hit by USDA's higher-than-expected planting estimates and higher-than-expected tally of March 1 corn stocks. Soybeans and all three wheats were also lower in spite of USDA's lowest all-wheat...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May contracts of corn and soybeans ended a little higher, while wheat prices were lower Thursday after a day of quiet trading and lackluster export sales. USDA's reports of Prospective Plantings and March 1 Grain Stocks are due...

  • USDA will release its quarterly Grain Stocks and annual Prospective Plantings reports on Friday, March 29, at 11 a.m. CDT. (Logo courtesy of USDA)

    USDA Reports Preview

    On Friday, March 29, at 11 a.m. CDT, USDA will release its quarterly Grain Stocks and annual Prospective Plantings reports. These reports at the end of March are known for their surprises and their ability to move prices...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May soybean meal dropped $6.60 a short ton Wednesday and pulled May soybeans down 13 1/4 cents to its lowest close in four months, bothered by ongoing demand concerns. May corn was lower along with most commodities on...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    Nearly all farm products closed lower Tuesday, from corn to canola and even including cattle and hogs. May soybeans were down 5 3/4 cents and May K.C. wheat was down 6 cents, both facing the possibility of bearish March 1 Grain...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May contracts of corn, soybeans and all three wheats closed modestly higher Monday on light volume, encountering no visible opposition throughout the day. The June U.S. dollar index is trading moderately lower and other commodities...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May corn ended 2 cents higher Friday and pocketed a whole nickel on the week with slight help from flooding concerns and an 11.8 million bushel purchase from China on Friday. Friday's losses in soybeans put them modestly lower on...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    The May contract of corn was up 4 3/4 cents and May soybeans were up 4 1/2 cents, both finally showing slight acknowledgement of this month's flooding problems and concerns about the upcoming planting season. Winter wheat...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May contracts of both, Chicago and K.C. wheat closed up 8 1/4 cents Wednesday after dovish comments from the Federal Reserve sent the June U.S. dollar lower. Corn and soybeans saw lesser benefit and finished with small gains.

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    May contracts of corn, soybeans and winter wheat were slightly lower Tuesday in quiet trading with no daily export sales announcement for a sixth consecutive day. May Minneapolis wheat posted a small gain with some concern about...

  • (DTN illustration by Nick Scalise)

    DTN Closing Grain Comments

    In spite of pervasive flooding through much of the Western Corn Belt, traders showed little response Monday, leaving corn and soybeans with small losses. May K.C. wheat was down 6 1/2 cents, the biggest percentage loser among...