The proposed tariffs on U.S. soybeans as part of the trade war beginnings between China and the U.S. is shifting trade habits. Trump announced the intention last week to seek $100 billion of tariffs on additional Chinese products, which comes after China announced intention of a 25 percent soybean tariff. Data from the Department of Agriculture Friday shows other nations are buying U.S. soybeans. Trade analyst say “unknown destinations” for U.S. soybean buys from Friday likely are processors from European Union nations, including the Netherlands and Germany.
Jack Scoville, analyst with the Price Futures Group, told Reuters “we’re seeing a realignment of trade,” and he attributes the changes to politics driving up Brazilian soybean prices. The U.S. Soybean Export Council speculates that Brazilian soybeans will likely go to China in the near-term, leaving U.S. soybeans available for others. Meanwhile, Jim Bower of Bower Trading pointed out that trade may shift, but global demand should not decrease overall, because the U.S. and South America are the only major soybean growing areas.