The next court appearance, for the accused, is set for April 30th. A local business said it was broken into back on March 29th and had three dirt bikes taken.Two days later, an alert motorist noticed one of the bikes on the back of a pick-up and called police.When authorities tried to pull the vehicle over, it sped off, but RCMP were able to get a license plate number.- Advertisement -A follow-up search of property related to the truck found, not only the bikes, but five vehicle light bars and other stolen property.Charges are now pending against 21-year-old Cory Edward Nome for Possession of Stolen Property and Flight (from police)…and, for Break & Enter, Theft, and Possession of Stolen Property against 19-year-old Ryan Alan Howatt and 20-year-old Bronte Addison Ketsa.Additional charges of are being suggested against a teenaged boy and girl; charges are also being considered against two other minors.Advertisement
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Markets continued to trade sideways. Farmers are selling at $3.70 futures and buyers are able to widen basis and still buy it. The flat price value of corn isn’t moving much.Market actionOptions ExpirationOn 1/22/16 a $3.80 Feb corn option that I had sold on 12/10/15 for 8 cents expired worthless. This is because March futures were under $3.80 on the day of expiration, I’m not required to do anything but collect the full premium of 8 cents. This trade represented 5% of my production.Options TradeKnowing the trade above was going to expire worthless, I sold an April $3.80 call for 8 cents on 1/22/16 to try and collect some additional premium in the future. Again representing 5% of my production. What does this mean?Based on May corn futures – The Option expires 3/25/16Corn below $3.80 – I keep the 8 cents premiumCorn above $3.80 – I have to sell grain for $3.80 but keep the 8 cents premium◦ In other words, if this happens I sell corn for $3.80, plus an additional 16 cent premium (the 8 cent Feb call + the 8 cent April call) for a total of $3.96.◦ Then…since I have all of my 2015 grain sold, I can move the short futures position to Dec futures for an additional 17 cents (market carry) to make a total of $4.13 sold for 2016 crop.With what I know today, I’m pleased with either outcome of this trade.Basis tradeIt’s time for me to core the bins out. This should allow me to keep my remaining corn in condition until the middle of summer. Last week I found an end user willing to pay me -.20 picked up on the farm, which has been the best opportunity on basis so far on 2015 corn. So, I sold about 10% of my2015 corn production. Since making the trade, basis pulled back 10 cents with the recent 20 cent board rally. I hope the basis market rebounds, because I will need another opportunity in the spring or summer to finish selling my 2015 production.Getting caught up in the headlinesWith the market not moving in January, headlines about relatively insignificant issues are creeping up. Farmers can get so focused on these issues, that sometimes they miss the big picture and what really affects farm operation profits. Following are three big ones I’ve noticed.Fuel costsMany are rushing to cover 2016 diesel inputs. While it’s important to be diligent about all input costs, fuel only represents 1% of a farmer’s overall budget. Let’s look at the numbers. Average farmers use 1 gallon/acre/field pass, or about 3-6 gallons/acre/year. Even if fuel prices adjusted a full $1/gallon this coming year, the added expense is only around $5/acre. This translates to 3 cents per bushel on corn or 11 cents on beans. The corn and bean market move that amount any given day. Realistically fluctuations would be closer to maybe 50 cents per gallon and that would mean a change of only 1.5 cents for corn and 6 cents for beans.FertilizerFertilizer is probably the largest input cost for farmers that has significant cost adjustments. Similar to fuel costs though, even if prices decrease by $100/ton this year (a big swing), the cost would be about $15/acre less. This equates to about 10 cents/bushel. Between the two, fertilizer is the bigger worry, but relatively small in the grand scheme of things. Market prices can swing 10 cents in an active day for the corn futures. The Realty of Corn Production GloballyWeather-related events in other countries can also make big headlines. Recently, I read that South Africa will have to import some corn due to drought conditions. On the surface this seems like a bullish story; however, South Africa only produces 1% of the world’s corn. To put it into perspective, the state of Michigan produces the same amount of corn as South Africa. Would the market get overly concerned if MI was importing corn from OH? Unless it’s college football recruits that are leaving OH for MI, I doubt many would care. This got me to think about the production of other countries in the world…Brazil is the 3rd largest corn producer in the world – equal to corn production in IL and IN combinedThe European Union (28 member countries) produces about 10% more corn than the entire state of IAUkraine and the other 12 countries of the Former Soviet Union produce about the same amount of corn as NE and MNArgentina usually only produces a little more than KS and ND combinedMexico’s production is equal to SDCanada and OH produce almost the same amount each yearRussia, the largest land mass country on the planet, raises no more corn than the state of MO each yearIndia, with the world’s second largest population, only accounts for the same amount of corn grown in KY, WI and PA combinedSo, what does matter when looking at the corn market?The United States (35%) and China (23%) account for 58% of the world’s corn productionIf IA was its own country it would be the 4th largest producer of corn in the worldIA, IL, NE, MN, IN, and SD produce 25% of the world’s corn8 Billion bushels of corn are in storage around the world, or nearly what China produces each yearAbout 20% of that stored world corn is sitting on farms unpriced in bins across the United States.What does have a big impact on farm profits?YieldWhen looking at the big picture, the number of bushels raised per acre has the biggest profit impact. Growing just one more bushel of corn per acre reduces costs by 3 cents/bushel (1 bushel of soybeans reduces costs by 20 cents/bushel). One bushel more in yield can cover a large fluctuation in fuel and has a big impact in fertilizer cost adjustments.WeatherLarge-scale weather issues in the U.S. or China will have a big impact on the market. And while isolated incidents around the world can cause price volatility, it is usually on a short-term basis. Savvy farmers will be ready to take advantage of those small rallies in their marketing plan as they come available.Developing a market strategy that includes market carry and basis planningAs I continue to explain, having a developed marketing plan that considers the farm operation’s goals and objectives and incorporates market carry and basis strategy should not only bring bigger profits to farm operations, but reduce risk.Bottom-line, rather than spending so much time obsessing over all those headlines, sit down and spend your time developing a more sophisticated marketing strategy. If this makes you nervous or you aren’t sure how to start, consider working with a seasoned grain marketer who can explain the more technical aspects in a way that you can both understand the process, and make you feel comfortable about what you are doing. Often there are options available to farmers that they didn’t even realize. The potential profits available for farmers will likely out-weigh fuel or fertilizer input fluctuations.Jon grew up raising corn and soybeans on a farm near Beatrice, NE. Upon graduation from The University of Nebraska in Lincoln, he became a grain merchandiser and has been trading corn, soybeans and other grains for the last 18 years, building relationships with end-users in the process. After successfully marketing his father’s grain and getting his MBA, 10 years ago he started helping farmer clients market their grain based upon his principals of farmer education, reducing risk, understanding storage potential and using basis strategy to maximize individual farm operation profits. A big believer in farmer education of futures trading, Jon writes a weekly commentary to farmers interested in learning more and growing their farm operations.Trading of futures, options, swaps and other derivatives is risky and is not suitable for all persons. 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If you don’t know who your dream clients are, if you haven’t identified the best prospects in your territory, you have a form of friction that prevents you from prospecting.When you don’t know how to gain an appointment by trading enough value for the time you are asking for, the resistance you get when you ask for a meeting is unnecessary friction. The “no” you hear is friction.Your dream client has concerns about meeting with you, and those concerns are real to them. When you decide to overcome their objections you create resistance than would have been more easily removed had you decided to resolve their concerns. Unresolved concerns are friction.When you show up and begin a conversation by talking about your company, your products and services, your global footprint, and the big name logos you presently serve, you create the friction that comes with believing that you win sales by providing proof that your prospect should buy from you because your company and products are great instead of using that time to serve them. Self-orientation, in all its forms, creates resistance.Sometimes things that create friction feel like progress. Your dream client asks you tells you how impressed they are and asks you for a proposal and pricing. But because you haven’t collaborated around the solution and haven’t done the work to really understand their challenges or their constraints, you have created friction by providing them with something to which they can easily refuse. Lack of an effective theory about how to control the process is friction.In larger, complex, B2B sales, there are often more stakeholders than smaller, simpler sales. When you try to bypass including the people who are going to be effected by any decision to change, you create the friction that is their resistance to being excluded from the conversation. You also have likely created the additional friction that comes from losing the high ground that comes with dealing with friction.The intention to speed up sales does not create friction when the tactics employed mean slowing down. When the tactics you use speed things up, you create the kind of friction that can bring the entire process to a crawl.The remedy for friction is lubrication, making the surface smooth and even and easy for things to move from one side to the other. If there is a potential to create friction, then there is also the potential to create antifriction. If you want to make selling easier, then do the hard work of creating antifriction. Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Now