Corn Products (CPO, news, chart) and a handful of ethanol producers are seeing defensive trading Thursday amid ongoing worries about flooding in the midwest and higher corn prices. States from Missouri to Wisconsin are being inundated and flooding is putting this year’s corn crop at risk. Higher corn prices will in turn hurt ethanol margins. Citi downgraded Verasun (VSE) and Biofuel (BIOF) to Sell. ADM (ADM) cut to Hold. They kept CPO at a Buy saying corn requirements hedged to 2007. However, CPO fell after BMO downgraded to Market Perform saying the company will need to purchase corn at significantly higher prices in 2009. CPO is down $4.30 to $41.83 and volume in the options market is running four times the usual, with 1,132 puts and 578 calls trading on the day. Active trading also seen in ADM and Bunge (BG).
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Frederic Ruffy is a well-known trader, writer, and strategist who has spent years educating investors and creating intelligent, insightful, unbiased market observations that are frequently cited by the Wall Street Journal and other financial publications. As senior analyst, Fred provides frequent and regular notes and daily updates for activity of interest.