Report: U.S. Farmers Still Planning Fewer Soybeans in 2019 Despite Promise of China Trade Deal
When President Donald Trump was having the highly-anticipated dinner with China’s President Xi Jinping at the G20 summit, farmers in the Midwest had just finished harvesting their crops and were busy placing seed orders for next year, reports Krystal Hu on Yahoo Finance.
Like many investors, they were closely watching the meeting, and as expected agricultural products came up in the discussions. According to the White House, China has agreed to buy agricultural products from the U.S. immediately. “Farmers will be a very BIG and FAST beneficiary of our deal with China,” Trump tweeted following the meeting.
But so far, farmers are hesitant to believe Trump and his cheerful promises. “I don’t think there is anyone changing their crops mix up for spring today from last week. Even if China starts to buy, the question is, how big the buy will be?” said Kristin Duncanson, a soybean farmer in Minnesota. “We’re hopeful, but we’ll be cautious.”
While the temporary U.S.-China trade war ceasefire is good news to many, some farmers have decided to grow fewer soybeans next year after a painful 2018. China used to be the largest purchaser of U.S. soybeans, but the market plunged 98% from the $1.2 billion imports in January. China levied a 25% tariff on U.S. soybeans in a retaliatory strike and turned to other soybean growers like Brazil.