Saudi blogger Raef Badawi given first 50 lashes

first_img Follow the news on Saudi Arabia Saudi ArabiaMiddle East – North Africa NSO Group hasn’t kept its promises on human rights, RSF and other NGOs say RSF joins Middle East and North Africa coalition to combat digital surveillance Saudi ArabiaMiddle East – North Africa January 9, 2015 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Saudi blogger Raef Badawi given first 50 lashes June 8, 2021 Find out more Raef Badawi, a Saudi blogger who is serving a 10-year jail term, was flogged publicly in Jeddah today, receiving the first 50 lashes of a total of 1,000 to which he has also been sentenced. Reporters Without Borders condemns this shocking sentence and again calls on the authorities to overturn it at once. Help by sharing this information News April 28, 2021 Find out more Saudi media silent on RSF complaint against MBS News March 9, 2021 Find out more RSF_en News to go further Receive email alerts News “Despite our campaign and despite yesterday’s US State Department statement calling for the flogging to be stopped, Saudi Arabia has gone ahead with this appalling punishment,” Reporters Without Borders programme director Lucie Morillon said.“Raef Badawi’s only crime was to start a public debate on his blog about the way Saudi society is evolving, but he was given 50 lashes today before a crowd of spectators outside Jeddah’s Al-Jafali Mosque and, in all, he is to receive a total of 1,000 lashes in 20 weekly sessions.“Although the Saudi authorities have turned a deaf ear to repeated appeals from international human rights groups, Reporters Without Borders will continues its fight so that Badawi can be freed as soon as possible and be spared this inhuman retribution.”A source close to the case said that, while being driven in a police car to the mosque, Badawi thought about all those who have supported him and, while being flogged, pronounced the name of a supporter during each lash in order to give himself courage and strength. Organisation last_img read more

Univision Airs Series on Operation Martillo

first_img The Univision journalist said that around 10:00 a.m. on the third day of the voyage, his team noticed that the USS Nicholas increased speed to 30 knots. Intelligence reports from land had warned that a speedboat was traveling through international waters in the Pacific with suspicious cargo. By Dialogo July 17, 2012 “While we were on our way to intercept it, a Coast Guard P-3 Orion surveillance plane came within sight of the boat and forced it to stop, but its four crew members began to throw the cargo overboard in order to get rid of the evidence,” Arámbarri explained. By early afternoon, they had succeeded in detaining the boat and cornering its crew members amid the smoke of flares that marked the exact location in international waters between Colombia and Panama. “It was important for Univision, as an international network, to provide coverage of Operation Martillo for our Hispanic audience in the United States and in Latin America, considering the repercussions that drug trafficking has in the region and on its population in general,” Arámbarri said. “Univision felt that it had a commitment to the Latin American region to publicize this joint effort to counteract drug trafficking in our region,” he added. Five episodes making up a week-long miniseries aired from July 9 – 13 on Univision international television network to show a typical day in the execution of Operation Martillo, a joint effort among 14 partner nations from Europe and the Western Hemisphere, including the United States, through the Southern Command, to counteract drug trafficking in coastal waters along the Central American isthmus. Arámbarri said that the 10 days on board the USS Nicholas allowed him to see how the U.S. Sailors live as they spend six months far from home on this mission. In addition, he highlighted the fact that each of them plays a key role, from the machinist below decks to the Sailor who operates the desalinization plant and the captain on deck. “They’re all part of a mechanism that makes the frigate function perfectly and the mission be carried out with success.” center_img In the 175 days that the USS Nicholas was deployed in Pacific waters in support of Operation Martillo, the frigate disrupted six attempts to traffic drugs, seizing a total of approximately 7.5 tons of cocaine and 110 kilos of marijuana. The Vessel Search and Seizure (VSS) team, the U.S. Coast Guard’s tactical boarding team, with legal authority to make arrests and seizures, arrested the four alleged drug traffickers. Later, a human chain recovered the packages that were floating in the sea. In total, 500 kilos of cocaine and 109 kilos of marijuana were seized in the operation. Arámbarri commented that, it was interesting to find that a number of packages wrapped in the same way as the drugs turned out to contain blocks of wood. Drug traffickers cheating one another? Whatever the reason, the shipment was successfully intercepted before it reached the streets, and its mules were brought before the courts. Network journalist Ricardo Arámbarri spent 10 days with crew members aboard U.S. Navy frigate USS Nicholas, during which he witnessed the daily life of the men and women who make it possible for that enormous guided-missile ship to function, as well as an interception in international waters that led to four arrests and the seizure of more than half a ton of drugs. To watch the complete series, visit the following link: http://www.youtube.com/user/narconoticiasvideo?feature=results_mainlast_img read more

Credit union/Community bank mergers often not a mismatch

first_img 3SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Over the last several quarters, the number of credit union mergers has generally been in the 20-25 range. The typical reasons: 1) field of membership expansion, 2) additional products and services, and 3) increasing scale to offset higher regulatory costs.One area where we are seeing more interest is a credit union acquisition of a bank. Two that come to mind are the acquisition of Calusa Bank by $1.2 billion Achieva Credit Union, Dunedin, Fla., and the acquisitions of Flint River National Bank and Farmer’s State Bank by $323 million Five Star Credit Union, Dothan, Ala.On the face of it, a credit union acquiring a bank seems like such a mismatch—especially on the cultural front. However, there are more similarities than differences. First off, the majority of community banks with less than $1 billion in assets are privately held, typically by a small group of shareholders or a family. Their missions and vision statements are very similar to those of credit unions. They have a deep relationship focus and are often involved in their communities. So, these private community banks are very credit union-like except for two things: They do more business lending, and they pay taxes. continue reading »last_img read more

Former CWI president and SportsMax founder Pat Rousseau passes on

KINGSTON, Jamaica (CMC) – Former Cricket West Indies (CWI) president, Pat Rousseau, died here late Tuesday following a long illness.The prominent Jamaican lawyer and businessman led the-then West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) from 1996 to 2001, after taking over from the late Barbadian captain Peter Short.Rousseau, 85, oversaw a turbulent period in West Indies cricket but was largely credited for overhauling the board’s commercial model and helping to monetise its brand.Newly elected CWI president, Ricky Skerritt, who served as Windies team manager under Rousseau, hailed the former administrator, who had been “passionate” in all his pursuits.“Pat was a strong man, always very focussed and determined. He was a sharp legal and business mind, and it was reflected during his time in charge of the organisation between 1996 and 2001,” said Skerritt, who assumed the CWI presidency last month.“He, along with former chief marketing executive Chris Dehring, was instrumental in signing a record (at the time) international television deal for the WICB, now CWI, with Sky and convincing the International Cricket Council (ICC) to stage the ICC Cricket World Cup 2007 in the Caribbean.“Pat was also the driving force behind the incorporation of the WICB in November 1998 – starting the transformation of the organisation into becoming a more corporate operation – and the permanent relocation of the corporate headquarters to Antigua.”He added: “He was passionate about his work, he loved life, he was a keen follower of sport, leading to him and Dehring launching SportsMax, the first subscription television network broadcasting sport programming to the entire Caribbean, and he was a great mentor to many people. He will be missed.”Jamaican Dehring, who also served as chief executive officer for the 2007 World Cup, described Rousseau as a “pioneer in just about everything he did”.“He was highly respected and he was the one who recruited me to the Board of West Indies cricket in 1996 … and has moulded me and was responsible also for the bid for Cricket World Cup,” said Dehring.“We spent a lot of time together travelling all over the world and I relished those moments and his death is not only a loss to Jamaica, but for the region and we are very proud of what he has achieved.”He added: “He was a pioneer in just about everything he did and was never afraid to take on huge challenges and he had big vision.”After previously serving on the board’s marketing committee, Rousseau assumed the West Indies cricket presidency in 1996. He was re-elected unopposed two years later before beating late Trinidadian Alloy Lequay to win again in 2000.During his tenure, Rousseau was forced to grapple with several controversies, even as on-the-field performances declined. He oversaw the controversial 1998 tour of South Africa which was nearly boycotted by a players strike, and was forced to fly to London to meet with players in order to rescue the tour.That same year, the board copped heavy criticism after the first Test against England at Sabina Park here was abandoned after 62 balls due to a dangerous pitch.Skerritt’s controversial sacking as team manager in 2001 also precipitated a chain of events which led to Rousseau’s resignation.He was replaced by prominent Barbadian and legendary former West Indies fast bowler, Sir Wes Hall. read more

FA Cup third round: Liverpool draw Everton in third round

first_imgLiverpool will host Everton in the third round of the FA Cup, while Championship leaders Leeds United will travel to Arsenal.Holders Manchester City will welcome League Two side Port Vale and Manchester United go to Wolves in a repeat of last season’s quarter-final.National League side AFC Fylde, the lowest ranked team definitely through to the third round, will travel to Premier League Sheffield United.Ties are played between 3-6 January.Boston, of the sixth-tier National League North, will host Premier League opposition in Newcastle United, if they can come through a replay against Rochdale on Tuesday, 10 December.Fellow non-league sides Hartlepool and Eastleigh also face replays, but could meet Oxford United and Barnsley respectively should they progress.Merseyside rivals Liverpool and Everton meet on Wednesday night in the Premier League, with both sides in wildly differing form.Jurgen Klopp’s Reds are eight points clear at the top of the league, while Everton sit two points above the relegation zone with pressure mounting on boss Marco Silva.All three of the most recent meetings between Leeds and Arsenal have come in the third round of the FA Cup, the Gunners winning 1-0 in 2012 and also prevailing 3-1 in a replay in January 2011, following a 1-1 draw.Wolves reached their first FA Cup semi-final in 21 years by beating Manchester United in last season’s quarters, while Manchester City will be wary of falling victim to lower-league Port Vale after going out to then-League One side Wigan in the fifth round in 2018.Draw in fullLeicester City v Wigan AthleticQPR v Swansea CityFulham v Aston VillaChelsea v Nottingham ForestWolves v Manchester UnitedCharlton Athletic v West BromRochdale or Boston United v Newcastle UnitedCardiff City v Forest Green Rovers or Carlisle UnitedOxford United v Exeter City or Hartlepool UnitedSheffield United v AFC FyldeSouthampton v Huddersfield TownLiverpool v EvertonBristol City v Shrewsbury TownBournemouth v Luton TownBrighton v Sheffield WednesdayBristol Rovers or Plymouth Argyle v Coventry City or Ipswich TownEastleigh or Crewe Alexandra v BarnsleyManchester City v Port ValeMiddlesbrough v TottenhamReading v BlackpoolWatford v Tranmere RoversPreston v Norwich CityMillwall v Newport CountyCrystal Palace v Derby CountySolihull Moors or Rotherham United v Hull CityBrentford v Stoke CityFleetwood Town v PortsmouthArsenal v Leeds UnitedGillingham v West Ham UnitedBurton Albion v Northampton TownBurnley v Peterborough UnitedBirmingham City v Blackburn Rovers Source: BBClast_img read more

Montrezl Harrell’s emergence raises Clippers’ ceiling — and tough trade, free-agency questions

first_img“Trez is a dude that goes everywhere and plays basketball,” Clippers guard Patrick Beverley told Sporting News. “He just loves to hoop. I was with him when he was a pup (in Houston). And he was the same way. Summer time you really can’t catch him because he’s here hooping. He works on his one-on-one game a lot, almost like a guard. So, it’s not a shock what we’ve seen with the results.”NBA TRADE DEADLINE: Latest news, rumors, targetsHarrell is enjoying a career year as the Clippers have arrived in the spotlight. He’s on pace to finish the year with career highs in points (19.4 per game) and rebounds (7.3 per game). His presence, along with three-time Sixth Man of the Year Lou Williams, gives the Clippers the highest-scoring best bench unit in the league.It’s been a long road for Harrell since he was included in that Paul trade package nearly three years ago. There was a moment when coach Doc Rivers and the Clippers were unsure if he would even be on the roster. But as has been the case with Harrell throughout his career, he proved the doubters wrong.”He just keeps getting better,” Rivers told Sporting News. “The first year he was just playing some minutes and playing hard. The second year we got him involved in some actions, and now he’s a post player. Without a pick-and-roll. He’s been fantastic.”As the 2019-20 season has progressed, Harrell continues to show that he’s more than just a pick-and-roll player who relies on Williams to create shots. He has improved his face-up and back-to-the-basket game, and he’s been able to take slower bigs off the dribble.Montrezl Harrell with the midrange jumper!#Clippers #Knicks pic.twitter.com/Ez2R1wiaJ4— Box Out TV (@BoxOutTV) January 5, 2020He has also made strides with his passing, especially with his reads as a roll man.Another clip of Harrell passing here. Slips the screen with the Knicks jumping out vs. LouWill. We talk about gravity but you can see Harrell’s here, three Knick defenders coming in to help. Looks corner then hits Shamet for 3. An important pass for rolling bigs to make. pic.twitter.com/K7CQzKjfY8— Steve Jones Jr. (@stevejones20) January 6, 2020Harrell’s emergence does create questions for the Clippers, however.The former Louisville star is in the final year of a two-year contract with the Clippers and will enter unrestricted free agency this summer. Considering he only makes $6 million per year on his current deal, Harrell is in line for a massive raise.With an unimpressive class of free agents set to hit the open market in 2020, Harrell could receive offers starting at around $20 million annually. It’s not out of the question that Harrell could land in the four-year, $100 million range. Knowing that Kawhi Leonard and Paul George ($70 million combined in 2020-21) are already on the books, the Clippers will have to think long and hard about whether they’re willing to go all-in on Harrell.On one hand, he’s a large reason why the Clippers have been able to turn around their organization in such a short amount of time. Harrell and Beverley are largely credited with bringing a toughness to the organization that was lacking during the “Lob City” era. His production has increased each year, and his grit and hustle cannot be measured.But there are limitations to his game. He’s undersized for a center. At 6-7, he struggles to match up against some of the more formidable bigs in the game — think Anthony Davis and Joel Embiid. He’s not an elite rebounder, and he doesn’t strike fear into opponents as a rim protector.Offensively, he’s done most of his damage against second units. How will he fare against starters, particularly in a tight playoff series?NBA DRAFT BIG BOARD: Ranking the top 60 prospectsThe questions surrounding Harrell’s game are the reason for the chatter regarding a potential trade prior to the Feb. 6 deadline. ESPN insiders Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe mentioned Harrell as a possible trade or free-agency target for the Mavericks on a recent episode of the “Woj & Lowe” show, though there doesn’t seem to be much intel suggesting the Clippers would like to move the soon-to-be 26-year-old.If the Clippers are willing to pay Harrell his asking price this summer, the conversation is easy. Harrell gets paid, and the Clippers lock up a budding star for the foreseeable future. It’s a win-win situation.But if the Clippers draw a line in the sand, losing Harrell for nothing would be painful. In that scenario, a trade is much more realistic. There are teams that could use Harrell’s services, and the Clippers would receive some decent pieces in return. If you ask his teammates and the Clippers faithful, Montrezl Harrell’s ascension comes as no surprise. His hard-nosed style of play coupled with an underdog drive has made him a Clipper favorite.After he was sent from Houston to Los Angeles as part of the Chris Paul trade in the summer of 2017, Harrell became an instant spark off the bench. But this season, he’s become more than just a shot of life for the Clippers. He’s someone that the team needs in order to fulfill its lofty goals. In all likelihood, the Clippers will stay loyal to Harrell. They’re in win-now mode. What kind of message would a trade of Harrell send to Leonard and George, two guys who both signed two-year deals this offseason?Regardless of what happens over the coming months, one thing is clear: Harrell has made himself into more than just an energy player off the bench.Harrell will get paid this offseason. But will he remain in Los Angeles?last_img read more

2 people arrested after man’s body was found in Okeechobee County street

first_imgOkeechobee County police have arrested two people after officials found a 24-year-old man’s body in the street early Sunday morning.Sheriff officials said deputies responded to the scene on the 200 block of NE 14 Ave., where they found the body of Tohermain Rosier. Rosier was pronounced dead at the scene but cause of death is still unknown.31-year-old Derrick Levi Clay, and 25-year-old Cheyenne Mackenzie Smith, have been arrested and both face charges.Clay was charged with one count of murder. Smith was charged with one count of accessory after the fact.Officials say the investigation is ongoing.last_img

Be sure to check out 2016 Ohio State Fair results at ocj.com

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The OCJ and OAN staff will once again be “Feeding you the results first” presented by Kalmbach Feeds. The online coverage at ocj.com will include results, photos and videos with the winning exhibitors on the day of the show. The 2016 Ohio State Fair Junior Market Show coverage dates are: • Jr. Boer Goat Show, July 23 • Jr. Market Lamb Show, July 27 • Jr. Poultry Show, Aug. 4 • Jr. Market Beef Show, Aug. 6 • Jr. Barrow Show, Aug. 5-6 • Sale of Champions, Aug. 7.last_img

More on options: Making the right call with calls

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Results from a recent Farm Futures survey show farmers will plant roughly the same number of corn and bean acres — around 90.5 million acres. If true, this would be long term bearish for beans and long term relatively bullish for corn. Estimating South America’s soybeansAt the start of the growing season the USDA predicted 159 million metric tons (mmt), or about 6.3 billion bean bushels, would be produced in South America (Brazil 102 mmt/Argentina 57 mmt). Considering the favorable weather conditions in Brazil, 105 mmt is possible. Argentina, on the other hand, has had excessive rain in parts and dry conditions in others, so yield estimates are wide ranging. In the last USDA report there were no production reductions, but the trade is skeptical. Currently ranges are 48 to 57 mmt. The under/over bet seems to be around 53 mmt.If the average estimates (Brazil 105 mmt/Argentina 53 mmt) happen, the expected mmt will be missed by only 1 mmt or 40 million bushels. While a minor factor, Uruguay and Paraguay have also had good weather this year and may produce a combined 1 mmt that would offset Brazil/Argentina’s decreased production. If this happens, the bean market supply will likely be too high and could put downward pressure on beans.However, if Argentina production is closer to 48 mmt it means there would be a 200 million bushel shortage that U.S. beans can fill with its burdensome 420 million carryout. If this happens, $11 per bushel futures is a real possibility.On a side note, there are rumors that India may export 2 mmt of soymeal in the next quarter. While this doesn’t include any soy oil, it’s important to remember palm oil will be available in April from SE Asia, which looks great after last year’s dismal crop.While short-term bean prices have been good, I’m concerned for prices long term. The basis market is dropping as the futures market increased, which is an indication that there is plenty of supply domestically. Usually fundamentals win in the long run. New crop beansWhile old crop bean values will be volatile until the South American harvest production is more certain, it hasn’t hurt new crop values. If the USDA confirms 90 million bean acres on March 31 report, and trend-line yields are produced (46-47 bushels per acre), it would mean a potential 400 to 600 million carryout. This potential is keeping pressure on new crop bean prices. CornThere is a lot of old crop corn left and demand is uncertain. If carryout increases, it will put pressure on new crop prices. I expect corn to trade sideways until the USDA report at the end of March. Option strategies Part 3Frequently farmers ask for my opinion on buying calls. While generally I’m not a big fan, purchasing calls can be a tool in a farmer’s toolbox. However, farmers must be careful to fully understand and consider both the advantages and disadvantages of using them. Regardless of my opinion on buying calls, I think it’s important that farmers understand all of their options when it comes to marketing their grain, so they can develop a plan that works best for them and provides the most piece of mind. Outlined below are several common call buying strategy options and the pros and cons for each scenario. What is a “call” option?Purchasing a call is the right to buy grain at a desired price. That price is called the strike price. Why would farmers purchase calls?Honestly, I have no idea why a grain producer would want to buy calls, because that means they want to buy more grain. In my opinion, farmers should always be grain SELLERS not buyers. Buying calls is speculating, plain and simple. Granted, it’s controlled speculation, but speculation is speculation. That said, for education purposes, let’s look at the reasons why farmers may consider it.Farmers purchase calls in an attempt to capture upside potential, after selling grain at lower than desired prices. Put another way, purchasing calls allows for unlimited upside potential if the market rallies, but limits losses to just the premium paid if prices fall below a certain price point. Also, there is no risk of margin call when purchasing a0 call, as they require paying for this right up front.This sounds great. A limited downside loss with unlimited upside potential sounds like a very safe and low-risk option.Purchasing calls has several benefits, so often brokers will suggest this option to farmers by first showing risk assessments where corn could potentially hit $3 while also showing the possibility of getting $5 in the future. Such low prices can frighten farmers, while the hope of getting $5 is so appealing. Therefore, on paper this trade can seem perfect to farmers by minimizing fears and providing hope.In many cases, brokers will first recommend selling cash corn or Hedge To Arrive (HTA) contracts as the market rallies above $4. And then they will recommend buying these “courage calls.” These calls can help farmers who have a hard time letting go because they are afraid of missing out on a huge market rally. The calls can help ease this fear. Since nobody can predict summer weather conditions, brokers often suggest leaving a farmers’ upside unlimited to take advantage of the unknown. So, are you against purchasing calls?I am extremely against purchasing corn calls. I always have more corn to sell, maybe not this year, but certainly next year and the year after that. While I always want corn prices to go up, it doesn’t always happen. However, corn usually has a market carry (i.e. future month prices are higher than current/near ones) and is the reason why I don’t want to buy calls.(Note — The bean market carry isn’t as consistent as corn and inverses, i.e. future month prices are lower than current/near ones, happen more frequently. Therefore, my bean strategy is different than my corn strategy and one could make a better case for buying calls in the bean market.)Why are you against purchasing calls?Basically, if the market drops after purchasing a call, I’m out the premium paid. While farmers often purchase calls to have “courage to sell,” my farm operation doesn’t need courage to be profitable. It just needs profitable prices. With futures under $4 (typically not profitable), I need to be careful and think strategically. Following are several examples that illustrate my point. Scenario No. 1After selling cash corn today for $3.70, a farmer purchases a $3.80 July call for 23 cents when March futures prices are near $3.70 (July is $3.83).Some brokers will call this a “reownership strategy with options.” Some end users call this a “minimum price contract.” All it means is a farmer has sold grain but believes the market has upside potential and wants to participate if it does. For most farmers, $3.70 is not a profitable sale. Adding the cost of the call (23 cents), to the $3.70 sale makes the trade now really $3.47, which is even worse.As mentioned, corn has a carry (i.e. March is at $3.70 and July is at $3.83). If corn rallies from $3.70 to $3.83, then the farmer will get some money back (most farmers sell near expiration, in this case it would be June 23).Interestingly, prices were similar to this scenario in 2016. Corn rallied to $4.39 in early June. So, this $3.80 call went from 23 cents to 63 cents in value (40-cent gain), while futures rallied nearly 60 cents. By the end of the week of June 18 weather was good, so the market fell 55 cents after five trading days, coinciding with when the July option expired at a 15-cent value. Best caseMost farmers with these options held to the last day. It would have taken extreme “courage” to sell the week before the big drop (virtually no farmer did). But if they had, they could have pocketed a 40-cent gain. ($3.70 + 40 cents = $4.10). Not a horrible trade, but July futures hit $4.39, so the farmer missed nearly 30 cents more of opportunity —and this was the best case scenario for this trade. Likely caseMost farmers would have held until expiration getting a 15-cent premium. After the 23-cent call purchase the farmer lost 7 cents, so they ended up with $3.63 ($3.70 – 7 cents). Most likely not a profitable price. What would have your strategy been in this scenario?In my opinion, 23 cents is expensive for $3.80 July futures. I would have doubted spring futures would drop below $3.47 (value of corn less cost of call) for a significant amount of time. I wouldn’t have sold the grain. I would have waited to see if the market went higher on weather scares and I would have sold futures when they were above $4, which is a profitable price and definitely at $4.20, I would have never held my old crop to $4.39. Granted there may have been some cost to roll my long position from March to May and then again to July, but it would have been less than 17 cents. At least $4.03 would have been likely and a reasonable outcome.I say it all the time, I don’t try for home runs. I get base hits and keep moving forward. So many farmers prefer to swing for the fences. In the end, it depends on your risk tolerance. Scenario No. 2A farmer purchases a $4.20 Dec call today for 20 cents when futures prices are near $3.90 against the Dec. They then sells a $5 call today for 7 cents. This results in a net cost of 14 cents (including commission).This trade strategy assumes prices will rally into spring and summer, allowing farmers to sell grain with futures or cash when breakeven points (or higher) are reached, say around $4.20. Then the farmer can participate in the rally all the way to $5 with almost no downside risk (besides the 14 cents). On paper this trade sounds reasonable.In my opinion, this is a good speculation trade, because the risk is only 14 cents for a chance to make 80 cents. However, to be clear, this is NOT a hedging trade. There is a big difference between the two.Still, this trade assumes farmers will know to sell at the top of the market, but often farmers continue to hold their corn as prices increase expecting prices to continue to go up. If a farmer did this trade last year and sold corn futures when it was $4.20 to $4.40, they would have likely been happy. However, after the 14-cent call cost, they only received $4.06 to $4.26. But, the market never rallied beyond these levels, and quickly went down after hitting the high. Most farmers did not sell at its peak. So in the end, this trade would have been a complete loss of 14 cents for most.This trade is even worse for farmers who aren’t 100% sold at harvest (like I typically am). Unsold farmers always need the market to rally to get prices above breakeven points. So, if a call loses money, unsold farmers will be in an even worse position than they already were. Ok, then I will just sell out of the call spread as prices rally?Again it sounds like a good idea until you realize that by selling the $5 call to reduce the expense of the $4.20 call and you have significantly capped your profit potential. Why did that happen?In the scenario above, as corn rallies from $3.90 to $4.50, the value of the $4.20 call most likely increases in value from 20 cents to 64 cents. Also, the $5 call sold for 7 cents will also increase to about 22 cents. Now when the farmer sells the call spread they can only make 42 cents (64 cents – 22 cents) when the market moved 60 cents. Plus, this farmer needs to subtract the original 14-cent cost to get in the trade. This means the trade was a 28-cent net profit, which was half of the futures rally that was originally hoped for. That doesn’t sound bad, why don’t you like that?In the best case scenario for this trade, I risked 14 cents to make about 28 cents. That is not a great return for the risk I took. Plus, with this I’m assuming the farmer sold at the top of the market, which very few did, in most cases with this trade, farmers would have likely taken a complete loss after waiting too long to sell, well after the rally was over.Again, I need to sell when I’m profitable and I can’t risk taking less hoping for some kind of home run. The chances are high that farmers will strike out with this play. Would you be willing to do this on 5% to 10% of your production?Maybe, but since it’s a speculation trade, I would be hesitant. Basically, this trade requires farmers to spend money hoping that the market rallies, which it usually will do from winter into summer. Why spend money on a trade that will likely happen anyway. I prefer that my marketing strategy assumes historical norms and trend lines, while still being prepared for rare events.The bottom line: farmers need to sell at profitable price points. Speculating trades like this increases farmer’s risk somewhat needlessly. Scenario No. 3A farmer purchases a $5 Dec call today for around 6 cents when futures prices are near $3.90 against the Dec futures.I consider this trade similar to playing the lottery. This trade isn’t linked to any sale, it’s just simply the right to buy corn if it hits $5. Why would a farmer with a $4 breakeven point want to have the option to buy grain at $5?The “strategy” of this trade is, if futures rally from $3.90 to $4.50, the value of the $5 call will increase from 6 cents to 21 cents, a potential 15-cent profit. That doesn’t sound bad until you realize the market had to move 65 cents for this to happen, meaning the farmer received 25% of the market move, which sounds bad. Plus, this is the best case scenario from last year and it assumes that the farmer sold at the very top, which is unlikely.I would almost never buy a corn call. They provide little downside protection and the market needs to rally substantially to make money on them. The thing is, I already need the market to rally to sell grain at profitable prices anyway, so adding this additional layer of speculation usually doesn’t make sense.Farmers need to think about what their goals are when it comes to their grain marketing. Hardly any farmer (me included) has corn sold for the 2017 harvest yet. We already need the market to rally substantially in order to make a profit. Why risk more money on a speculation trade? A farmer already has a large amount of inherent risk in their operation. The key is not to add to this risk, but instead reduce it.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. All of these investment products are leveraged, and you can lose more than your initial deposit. Each investment product is offered only to and from jurisdictions where solicitation and sale are lawful, and in accordance with applicable laws and regulations in such jurisdiction. The information provided here should not be relied upon as a substitute for independent research before making your investment decisions. Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC is merely providing this information for your general information and the information does not take into account any particular individual’s investment objectives, financial situation, or needs. All investors should obtain advice based on their unique situation before making any investment decision. The contents of this communication and any attachments are for informational purposes only and under no circumstances should they be construed as an offer to buy or sell, or a solicitation to buy or sell any future, option, swap or other derivative. The sources for the information and any opinions in this communication are believed to be reliable, but Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy of such information or opinions. Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC and its principals and employees may take positions different from any positions described in this communication. Past results are not necessarily indicative of future results. He can be contacted at [email protected]last_img read more