33 days into the partial government shutdown and who knows how many days into the US-China negotiations and neither one seem to have made any advancement. China proposed a 1 trillion dollar spending spree over 6 years to cut the trade deficit which was rejected by the US who wants it cut to a couple years. Talks were planned for later this week in Washington between US and Chinese senior officials, but has been canceled because there is a lack of progress. As I stated in my comments yesterday, the lack of progress on both of these issues will keep commodities in a tight trading range with the lack of any fundamental news. Producers should use caution on any unpriced grain that they currently have in storage. If/when the US issues get resolved, we could see a flood of information that will make the markets very volatile. Its anyones guess as to which direction the reports could send the markets so reducing risk is the safest option.
All Farm Service Agency (FSA) service centers will be open beginning January 24 to provide the majority of FSA services needed by farmers and ranchers during this critical time of the year for agricultural operations. Additionally, the limited FSA loan services initially made available at certain FSA county offices beginning January 17 will continue January 22 and 23.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has recalled more than 9,700 FSA employees to keep offices open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays beginning January 24. For the first two full weeks under this operating plan (January 28 through February 1 and February 4 through February 8), FSA offices will be open Mondays through Fridays. In subsequent weeks, offices will be open three days a week, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.
Agricultural producers who have business with the agency should contact their FSA office to make an appointment. The deadline to apply and complete applications for the Market Facilitation Program has been extended to February 14. Other program deadlines may be modified and will be announced shortly.
Have a Safe Day!