Soybeans jump on report Trump is going to announce billions in trade aid for farmers

Soybean prices jumped Tuesday after reports indicated the Trump administration is rolling out a $US12 billion plan to aid the farmers that have been hurt as a result of its tariff faceoff with major trading partners including China, the world’s largest soy importer.

Soybeans were up 0.94% to $US8.56 a bushel at 10:58 a.m. ET. Prices have fallen to near-decade lows, shedding 20% since the Trump administration announced plans to penalise China for alleged intellectual-property theft and what the president sees as unfair trade practices.

Politico first reported the Trump administration is set announce billions of dollars worth of aid to farmers affected by tariffs as soon as Tuesday. The plan will be funded by the Department of Agriculture’s broad authority and two components of the farm bill.

The program will extend about $US12 billion in emergency aid, according to the Washington Post.

The Trump administration enacted a 25% tariff on roughly $US34 billion worth of Chinese goods earlier this month and has another $US16 billion pending ahead of a public hearing. Beijing quickly retaliated with tariffs on $US34 billion worth of American products, including soybeans.

The aggressive crackdown on free trade has prompted frustration among American farmers, some of the most loyal supporters of Trump who could decide if his party will keep majorities in Congress come November.

Under the tariffs, China’s government has been pursuing measures to reduce domestic reliance on American soybeans. Kevin McNew, an economist at Farmers Business Network, told Business Insider that China has bought at least 2.5 million metric tons of soybeans on forward contracts he expects will be cancelled following the tariff implementation.

Soybeans are down 15% this year.

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