first_imgRep. Koffa: “I condemn my kinsman’s statement by forming a so-called Kru Defense Force.”Rep. Koffa, others condemn Formation of “Kru Defense Force”Grand Kru County District #2 Lawmaker Fonati Koffa has out-rightly condemned in strongest terms statement made by former rebel general Augustine Nagbe, aka General Power, last week that he will form a tribal force comprising Krus to defend and protect President George Weah.Rep. Koffa is the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and a member of the committee on Governance and Government Reform Committee and Election and Inauguration.“I feel compelled in no uncertain terms to condemn my kinsman, whose nom de guerre (whose war name), is General Power, and urge him to desist from talks of urban militarism. Similarly, I condemn all those engaged in incendiary rhetoric in the name of free speech,” Rep Koffa said.He added, “The Liberian state and people have endured much; our common challenges must be faced with clasped of hands one to another, not clutched fists.”Rep. Koffa is the first and only high profile official from the Kru ethnic group to issue a statement condemning the threatening statement the former rebel general made. General Power is on record for forcing a woman at gunpoint to eat human feces in West Point, a suburb of Monrovia, during the civil war.Alfred Chea, a Liberian journalist, added that the statement by General Power is such a “stupid” one that the President has to distance himself from it “because it has the propensity not only to threaten the country’s peace but to demoralize him (the President).Emmanuel K. Urey, founder of One Life Liberia, also said that because justice has not been brought against those who committed heinous crimes in the country to account for their actions, former rebel leaders like Power and others will continue to flaunt their freedom with intimidation tactics.“We do not have to dignify these people by giving them a position, and it is because of giving them a position in government that is making that other ‘stupid’ man to make that statement.  Do you know what tribalism has done in this country?  Tribalism caused people to be slaughtered for no reason, but only because they belonged to certain tribes,” Urey said.The statement by the ex-general does not only pose threat to the country’s existing peace but also adds ingredients to the tribal sentiments that continue to divide Liberians, which the Liberian Constitution frowns on and obliges the state to take steps in abolishing.In Article 5c of the Liberian Constitution, it is stated: “The Republic shall take steps, by appropriate legislation and executive orders to eliminate sectionalism and tribalism, and such abuses of power as the misuse of government, nepotism, and all other corrupt practices.”The Constitution, though, has a clause as part of the national government’s obligation, division on the basis of tribe remains an impediment to the unity of the Liberian people, and conflicts related to ethnicity are in most parts of the country.In Sinoe County where the Krus and the Sapos find themselves living together, the Sapos have made numerous complaints through their Representative, Matthew Zarzar, of social marginalization by the Krus.In Nimba, the Mandingos accuse the Gio and Mano people of denying them of their land, and have, therefore, taken the government to the ECOWAS Court for not doing much so that they can regain their land after the civil war.Similar tribal discrimination exists between the Mandingos and other tribes of Lofa and Bong counties.Although the Liberian Constitution gives the appointing power to the President, and the Senate confirms where applicable, it is widely known that most of the top officials of the George Weah Administration are from the South-east and of the Kru and Krahn ethnic groups, something that critics view as an act of tribal and social discrimination.Since the former rebel general made the threatening statement, there has been no word from the Executive Mansion as to whether the President condones such sentiments or not. Neither has the Ministry of Justice spoken out on the statements made by ‘General Power’, which are no doubt a threat to public safety.While the public is yet to hear what the President’s view is about the ex-rebel general’s statement, many eyewitnesses have attested that an exclusive training aimed at protecting President Weah outside of state security protection is ongoing at his newly built 46-unit condominium opposite the Baptist Seminary along the ELWA-RIA Highway.Although government is yet to respond to the “secret training,” a reliable source informed this newspaper on Monday, November 25, that General Power is always at the so-called base directing the trainees —all dressed in T-Shirts bearing President Weah’s portrait, learning to shoot weapons and with the advice that they are preparing to counter a planned protest on December 30 led by the Council of Patriots.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more


first_imgAll systems are a go in the construction of the new Dawson Creek Calvin Kruk Centre for Arts.Friday morning, the city of Dawson Creek held a ribbon cutting ceremony, signifying the beginning of the renovation process, converting the historic downtown post office into the brand new centre for arts.- Advertisement -The tender for the construction of the centre was awarded to a lower mainland company named Preview Builders International INC, who presented a bid of $8,863,984 to the Dawson Creek City Council on March 16.According to Dawson Creek Mayor Mike Bernier, construction has already begun and the city estimates the centre will be completed by December, 2011.Mayor Bernier, who has been involved in the entire four year development process, says the new centre will be very beneficial to the city of Dawson Creek.[asset|aid=3575|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=34213fe2408f4e5eff019bb4bcf6bc5f-Mayor Bernier_1_Pub.mp3]  Advertisement The Calvin Kruk Centre for Arts is being built in hounor of Calvin Kruk, the late mayor of Dawson Creek.last_img read more


first_imgHarry Kane scored the only goal of the game with a deft finish after pouncing on a disastrous pass by Marcello, who was trying to prevent a throw in, after 22 minutes.Humiliated 7-3 last week by Atletico Madrid, Real could thank goalkeeper Keylor Navas, starting in place of injured Thibaut Courtois, for preventing a heavier against an enterprising and more aggressive Spurs team.Madrid survived some goalmouth scares in the first half. After the break, Dele Alli went close twice and 17-year-old Troy Parrott hit the inside of the post.Zinedine Zidane’s team have conceded 13 goals and lost three of their four warm-up games.“We started off very badly, the opponent took advantage of our mistakes,” said Kroos.With Gareth Bale, the source of turmoil in recent weeks, left out of the squad for the trip to Munich and James Rodriguez yet to start after returning from Bayern, Real rarely threatened. Star summer recruit Eden Hazard was invisible.Both teams will be in action again tomorrow. Tottenham play the winner of the Tuesday’s second match, between Bayern and Fenerbahce. Real will have the opportunity to make amends tomorrow against the loser.Zidane’s men then travel to Austria to face Salzburg on August 6, then to Italy for a match against AS Rome, the last friendly before the starting the Spanish league away to Celta Vigo on August 17.0Shares0000(Visited 2 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Zinedine Zidane could only watch from the sidelines in Munich as his Real Madrid team lost again © AFP / Christof STACHEMUNICH, Germany, Jul 30 – Real Madrid’s disastrous pre-season continued on Tuesday as they lost 1-0 to Tottenham in Munich.“Our defeat was well deserved,” Real midfielder Tony Kroos told German TV after the match. It’s true that we’re not quite in good shape.”last_img read more


first_imgThe launch of the programme which has seen more than 100 drivers rehabilitated.A unique programme which has rehabilitated more than 100 drivers across Donegal is on the verge of closing because it cannot get funding.The highly-regarded Pro Social Ireland driver’s course, which is based in Letterkenny, has helped turned offending drivers into model drivers.The programme, which sees most of its clients referred by the local courts, had almost a 100% success rate. The programme encourages drivers to assess their driving habits.But now the programme is on the verge of shutting down according to the man behind the ground-breaking programme.Gary Doggett told Donegal Daily that they now get zero funding for the courses they run.And this week the five municipal authorities across Donegal all refused to allocate any funding to them.Mr Doggett said “To be honest I think we’ve all had enough at this stage. “The only money now coming in is from the clients themselves who we now have to ask a fee to do the programme.“Our landlord has ben very good to us but we are using borrowed tables and chairs – that’s how bad it is.“I can’t understand how Donegal County Council and the five local authorities are placing so much emphasis on road safety and yet they cannot allocate one cent between them to the programme,” he said.The programme did receive some funding previously from the Donegal Local Development Company but that has dried up.The programme, which sees offending drivers get a new outlook on other road-users, has had 104 drivers pass through its doors in the past two years. In that time just ONE person has reoffended.Both local Judge Paul Kelly and the Head of the Garda Traffic Corps, Inspector Michael Harrison, are huge advocates of the course.Only this week local TD Padraig MacLochlainn from Sinn Fein revealed he was planning to approach Minister Alan Kelly with a view to rolling out the programme on a nationwide basis.But Mr Doggett says none of that will count for anything if some kind of funding does not begin to come through the door. “I have my own full-time job in Sligo but I’m coming back to Donegal because I believe in this programme and I see it works.“But we can’t go on forever on a shoestring and continue to beg, borrow or steal top make it work.“If the council and the Government is serious about saving lives on our roads, then they will have to prove it by putting their hands in the coffers and allocating some kind of funding,” he said.UNIQUE SAFER DRIVING PROGRAMME TO BE PUT OFF ROAD BECAUSE OF LACK OF FUNDING was last modified: April 15th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:courtsdonegalDRIVER’S COURSEGARY DOGGETTletterkennyPRO SOCIAL IRELANDlast_img read more


first_imgMichael Conlan stopped his opponent in the second roundFLYWEIGHT Michael Conlan, who won an Olympic bronze at the London Games, has beaten Siarhei Loban.It now means that there are four Irish boxers into the semi-finals of the European championships in Minsk and are all guaranteed at least a bronze medal each.Conlan stopped his opponent in the second round. Conlan, from the Falls Road in west Belfast, joins Belfast boxer Paddy Barnes who has also clinched at least a bronze medal at the European Championships.It follows a split-points decision win over Istvan Ungvari.The twice Olympic light-fly bronze medallist had a 29-28, 27-30, 29-28 victory over the Hungarian in Belarus.However, fellow Belfast fighter Tommy McCarthy was beaten 29-28 29-28 29-28 by number one seed Teymur Mammadou of Azerbaijan at heavyweight. John Joe Nevin and Donegal’s Jason Quigley have also secured medals.Nevin was the first Irishman to secure a medal when he defeated Krisztian Nagy at bantamweight.Nevin enjoyed a comfortable 30-24, 30-27, 30-25 victory over his Hungarian opponent in Minsk.Middleweight Quigley, from Finn Valley Boxing Club, defeated Germany’s Stefan Hartel 30-27, 30-27, 29-28 in his quarter-final on Wednesday.Barnes progressed to the semi-finals despite the Argentine judge giving all three rounds to Ungvari. CONLAN MAKES IT FOUR IRISH BOXERS IN EURO SEMI-FINALS was last modified: June 6th, 2013 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:CONLAN MAKES IT FOUR IRISH BOXERS IN EURO SEMI-FINALSEUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPSfinn valley boxing clubJason QuigleyMichael ConlanMinskPaddy Barneslast_img read more


first_imgAn injured jogger had to wait 48 minutes to receive a lift to hospital by ambulance despite the hospital being just a kilometre away.The jogger was hit by an out-of-control car in Letterkenny following a two car collision on the town’s Port Road.Staff at Tobin’s Filling Station called the emergency services and were told an ambulance would be there in five minutes. However the ambulance did not arrive for 48 minutes after it had to come from Carndonagh – more than 60 kilometres away.It has now transpired that both ambulances at Letterkenny General Hospital were already out on emergency calls.The ambulances later arrived at the scene of the Letterkenny incident after the third ambulance had taken the man to hospital.The man was helped at the scene by a member of the public who administered first aid before the ambulance arrived. The HSE had failed to return calls at the time of going to press last night.Gardai have confirmed that a full investigation into the circumstances surrounding the crash has been launched.The jogger has since been released from hospital.  INJURED JOGGER HAD TO WAIT 48 MINUTES FOR AMBULANCE TO ARRIVE was last modified: October 4th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:ambulanceCarndonaghjoggerLETETRKENNYlast_img read more


first_imgLeMay, who owns a 3.78 GPA in pharmacy and masters of business administration graduate program, has played in 10 matches for the Bulldogs this season. He has scored two goals and handed out one assist. Four student-athletes from the Drake University men’s soccer team earned recognition for their efforts in the classroom as junior Steven Enna (Overland Park, Kan.) and seniors James Grunert (Muskego, Wis.), Ben LeMay (Hugo, Minn.) and James Wypych (Wellington, New Zealand) were tabbed first-team CoSIDA Academic All-District VI selections. LeMay was named to the first team for the third-consecutive year while Grunert and Wypych garnered the honor for the second-straight year and Enna earned the accolade for the first time. All four Bulldogs are eligible for national CoSIDA Academic All-America accolades. Grunert, who holds a 3.79 GPA in health sciences, has scored one goal and handed out two assists in 11 games. Drake hosts Central Arkansas for senior night this Saturday, Oct. 29 with first kick scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Cownie Soccer Complex. Wypych has a 3.57 GPA in international relations. He has started all 15 matches this season for the Bulldogs and leads the teams in goals with seven. On Oct. 22 against Evansville, Wypych recorded his first career hat trick with three goals scored on the Purple Aces. To be nominated, a student-athlete must be a starter or important reserve with at least a 3.30 cumulative grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) at his/her current institution.  Nominated athletes must have participated in at least 50 percent of the team’s games at the position listed on the nomination form (where applicable). Enna has a 3.55 grade point average in business studies. He has scored four goals and tallied one assist in 12 matches.  Print Friendly Versionlast_img read more


first_img Tags: AFCON 2019AlgeriaHerve RenardKenyaMoroccoNamibiaRicardo MannetiSenegal Tanzania Morocco were eliminated at the quarter finals in the 2017 AFCON. (PHOTOS/AGENCIES)AFCON 2019Morocco vs NamibiaAl Salam Stadium, CairoSunday, 23-06-2019 @5:30pmCAIRO – Morocco will be hoping to get off a winning start at the on-going Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) when they take on Minors-Namibia at the Al Salam Stadium in Cairo on Sunday afternoon.The Atlas Lions have been under-achievers in the past tournaments with their only triumph coming in the 1976 edition in Ethiopia.Morocco fell at the last 8 in the 2017 tournament, the first time they had progressed past the group stages since finishing second in Tunisia 200.After a good showing at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, Morocco are one of the strong favourites in the competition this time round.In manager Herve Renard, Morocco have arguably the best coach in AFCON history, the Frenchman being the only man to win two different titles with separate countries, doing so with outsiders Zambia in 2012 and Ivory Coast three years later.The game against Namibia will surely have significant implications for the Atlas Lions as on paper, it looks the easiest fixture to negotiate with the others coming against Ivory Coast and South Africa.Reaching the knock-out stages will be a whole lot tougher for Renard’s side that is if they fail to get three points off Namibia.For Namibia, they are yet to win a match at the finals, going into their third appearance.They first qualified in 1998, while they returned 10 years later. In both tournaments, they left the group stage with a single point, while the same could happen this time around.Namibia will be taking part in only their third AFCON tournament.They’ve landed one of the toughest groups in the tournament, facing Morocco, Ivory Coast and South Africa. Given that line-up, a point might be seen as a success for them.Namibia head into this tournament having come through one of the easiest groups in qualifying. They were second behind Guinea in Group K, narrowly edging ahead of Mozambique and Zambia.However, they got through the group having scored just five times in six matches, which shows their lack of quality. Without that cutting edge, we expect Namibia to struggle to pick up points.What the coaches are sayingHerve Renard, Morocco head coach“This will be my seventh tournament.“In terms of the image of Africa, this continent needs to improve because all around the world these days they can watch the tournament.“This is a key tournament for our football – and I say our football because I consider I am part of Africa too.“I have been on this continent for so many years now and sometimes I don’t like the image we give to everybody so if we want more positive comments about us to come from other parts of the world then we need to improve.”Ricardo Mannetti, Namibia head coach “I would like to remind the big boys that even small dogs have teeth.“We will be the best underdogs at the AFCON.“We are not saying that we are going there to beat any big team we will face in our group, but we will take it one game at a time.”Match StatsThe two nations have met six times in the history so far, with each country hosting three games.The Moroccans are did not lose any and only the first meeting finished in draw, and Morocco are currently on a five game winning streak over their next opponents.Morocco and Namibia’s only previous AFCON encounter was in 2008. Morocco won 5-1 in the group stages – it featured the last hat-trick scored in an AFCON game prior to 2019, courtesy of Soufiane Alloudi.This is Morocco’s 17th AFCON participation – their sole title came in 1976. The only time they’ve reached the final since then was in 2004, losing 2-1 against hosts Tunisia.Namibia’s six AFCON matches have produced a total of 27 goals, an average of 4.5 per game.This is Renard’s fifth AFCON as manager – he’s only lost three of his 23 games (W10 D10).The other games on Sunday-Senegal vs Tanzania @8pm-Algeria vs Kenya @11pmComments last_img read more


first_img6 December 2012In a bid to raise awareness about the negative impact of abuse and empower young people to tackle the scourge, loveLife – an HIV prevention programme for young South Africans – is running a blog sharing experiences, advice and encouragement to take a stand against abuse.Afro-Pop star Kelly Khumalo and online marketing guru Khaya Dlanga are among the personalities contributing to the blog, which is running on www.lovelife.org.za throughout the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children campaign.Writers on loveLife’s media team, readers of loveLife’s UNCUT magazine and members of the organisation’s social media sites are also contributing to the blog, which is linked to loveLife’s Nakanjani campaign encouraging young people to “take charge of their destinies”.“On the blog, you can find a range of open, honest pieces including one from Kelly Khumalo, who speaks exclusively to loveLife as part of our 16 Days campaign about her experiences of violence and her turbulent relationship with Jub Jub,” loveLife said in a statement.“Taking a unique angle, Khaya Dlanga puts the spotlight on love, abuse and money. He looks at how men sometimes use money to get sex and how women can be dishonest about their true feelings, pretending to love a guy when all they’re really after is his assets and his cash.“Articles will also feature information and advice in topics ranging from emotional, mental and financial abuse right through to raising sons who don’t abuse.”The blog also provides practical tips for people experiencing abuse, as well as information about resources such as loveLife’s Youth Line on 0800 121 900 and Plz Cal Me service on 083 323 1023, both offering access to free, confidential telephonic counselling.Beathur Mgoza Baker, loveLife’s head of media, said the blog was “a unique way to highlight the devastation wrought by abuse by giving people the opportunity to share experiences of their own and others’ abuse.“It also serves as an empowerment tool, offering information on where to get help and fostering healing through providing a platform for survivors to express difficult thoughts and feelings,” Baker said.Baker added that loveLife’s healthy sexuality and positive lifestyle programmes included modules aimed at giving young South Africans the knowledge, skills and attitudes to stand up to abuse.“Youth with a good sense of self-esteem tend to value themselves too much to stay in abusive relationships,” the organisation says on its website. “By choosing healthy relationships, they lower their risk of contracting HIV as it is easier to demand condom use and stand up to an unfaithful partner.”SAinfo reporterlast_img read more


first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed IngredientsThere are many factors that affect the futures market. It’s easy to rationalize why the market could be headed for a rally or a decline at any given time.  Last week I discussed the reasons to be bearish or bullish corn.  This week I discuss beans. Reasons To Be Bearish:The most massive carryout in bean history – currently at 950 million bushelsGood weather throughout much of Brazil for most of the growing seasonThe Brazil harvest is beginning this week and will be in full swing before the end of JanuaryLack of adequate storage requires South America to move their beans shortly after harvestChina has not bought many US beans this yearThe Asian Swine Flu in China could be much worse than stated and demand for soybeans could be greatly reducedChina claims to have found substitutes for soy in their pork dietsChina has adequate stocks of soybeans and could wait a year to replenish their supply without buying US productionLast year Argentina had one of the worst droughts in 40 years. This year weather has been better and larger crops are expected.China bought beans twice in the last 2 weeks and the market went down both timesReasons To Be Bullish:Beans continue to trade higher than many have predictedMany beans here in the US found storage in every nook, cranny and silage bag availableIt’s possible there could be a political solution to the trade tariff issue and it could include China buying much more if not all of their beans from the US for the next year or two to help with the trade imbalanceParts of Brazil have seen some dry weather and there is some debate as to how much production will have been effectedArgentina has many more weeks than Brazil until harvest and weather could still impact production thereThe rest of the world could still buy US beans even if China doesn’tThe Dreaded Margin Call And Why I Don’t Fear ItLast week I discussed the benefits of selling straddles or calls on a portion of my corn production.  When setting up trades I always know all possible outcome if the market goes up, down or sideways.  In the example provided last week, if the market rallies, I might be forced to sell corn futures for $3.99 against the March for my ’18 crop, which I’m comfortable doing with what I know today. I also have orders working to sell more of my 2019 crop, so that if the market rallies my sales targets will hit. However, if the market rallies those positions will likely put me into a situation where I’ll have to make margin call on some, or hopefully all, of my sold production.Misconceptions Concerning Margin CallRecently a market analyst said he would never short a call because if the market rallies significantly the seller would have unlimited margin call.  He went on to say there was no way to protect yourself against this type of situation.  He tried to scare farmers into thinking they would go broke making these types of trades.He then talked about how farmers will lose money chasing a position that goes against them and how they will lose money in both directions.  While that could happen it would only be the case if the farmer was chasing a position trade, which sounds highly speculative to me. I would never put myself into a position where I would have to chase the market on a rally, because I’m completely fine limiting my upside potential on some of my production in exchange for guaranteed premium now.Do You Ever Trade Out Of Your Positions If The Market Moves Against You?No I don’t.  As I have said many times before, when I place a trade I’m comfortable with all outcomes. If I’m not comfortable with an outcome then I don’t place the trade to begin with.  I hope I’m forced to sell some of my grain on any calls and straddles I sale because that means the market rallied.  Aren’t You Afraid Of Margin Call If The Market Rallies Then?Margin call makes a lot of farmers wince and keeps many from selling options or even making forward sales using futures.Sadly, these farmers (and apparently that analyst), don’t realize they are removing an important marketing tool out of their grain marketing tool box.  Eliminating margin call is like telling a baseball player to not swing at anything IN the strike zone.  A player may do alright swinging at questionable pitches, but they increase their odds on missing and striking out.  Just as it sounds silly to tell a baseball player to not swing at strikes, it sounds silly to me to tell farmers not to hedge their grain using futures or selling calls because they don’t want to pay margin call.Why Should Farmers Not Fear Margin Call?As a true hedger, I don’t like calling it a “margin call,” because that term is most often associated with speculators. A speculator making a margin call is in a bad financial situation because a trade has gone against them.  I’m not a speculator because I have the underlying commodity to cover any sale I’m making. I’m a hedger and that is a major difference when looking at grain marketing and risk management decisions.  A true hedger making a “margin call” is more accurately just making a finance decision.  It’s not a bad thing. Let me explain.Margin Calls For Hedgers Are Typically A Net Neutral (Neither A Gain Or Loss)When using the futures market to hedge or sell grain, it doesn’t really matter if I have to make a margin call.  Following is an example:Let’s say December futures are $4/bu in June and I sell some December corn futures because that seems like a great value to sell some corn.  Then in August corn rallies due to a huge weather scare and December corn increases to $6/bu.  Margin call means I have to have the difference between what I have my grain sold for in futures ($4), and the current CBOT futures price ($6).  So, in this example I would need to make a $2/bu margin call to my futures trading account.This part frightens farmers, because that can be a lot of money.   But, there is no reason to be worried, because I’m not losing that money.Why?Let’s assume that I will harvest my grain in October and take it to the elevator. For simplicity, let’s also assume the price in October is still the same as it was in August – $6. (the actual price in October would not really matter because the final outcome will be the same at any price level). So, I sell my grain for $6/bu cash to the elevator and they hand me a check for $6/bu. At the same time I sell to the elevator, I buy futures back in my hedge account for $6/bu.  This buy back keeps me net neutral on my hedged position. I had already sold in June when I picked a value I wanted for my grain.  The important part of this example was when I sold the corn for a cash contract, I immediately bought the same amount of bushels back in my hedge account, otherwise I would have become a speculator. I always have to keep my position net neutral on bushels when I sell my crops for cash and have a futures position.  Remember, I’m not a speculator, but instead just a hedger. In this case I got out of my hedges as I sold the grain for cash and delivered the grain to the end user. Even if I think futures can move up or down I have to take the position off when I make the cash sale.  Not doing so crosses the line from being a hedger to a speculator instantly.Now, when I combine my hedge account and the check for the physical grain from the elevator, I lose $2/bu in my futures account, but I still sold the corn for $6/bu cash. This is where I net out $4/bu between the two accounts, which is where I originally made my sale. At the time I sold in June I thought I was making a good sale. This is also the point where I have got back all of my margin call money. It came in the check for the physical grain which was sold for way more than my original planned sale.  That premium offsets the loss in the hedge account and fully pays down the margin call amount in the account.I Don’t Have Cash Just Lying Around To Make Margin Call Payments. This Sounds Bad.Most farmers don’t have a lot of cash laying around.  Farmers hedging grain need to work with their bankers. When I work with farmers, I work with their bankers first to make sure the banker understands the plan and to set up a path for margin calls as a part of a hedging position.  This is a low risk loan for bankers, so they are usually extremely supportive.  Many bankers will set up what is called a hedging line that is related, but separate from the operating note.In the above example I sold futures in June and delivered at harvest (4 months later).  If the rally didn’t start until August, it would mean a $2/bu loan for 3 months (August to October).  With a typical interest rate of 5.5% on a hedging or operating loan, this means only 2.75 cents/bu interest for the margin call for those 3 months (math = $2 x 5.5% / 12 months for a monthly rate x 3 months).Why Would I Even Do This Then? I Could Have Just Sold Grain To My Elevator And Not Worried About Margin Call.If corn rallies due to a major drought, you can’t take advantage of increasing basis levels and other premium opportunities unless you use futures contracts or if one uses Hedge To Arrive contracts (HTA’s). For instance, in 2012 (a drought year), I received $.80/bu more for my corn in the form of basis with what I sold using futures than farmers who sold corn for a flat price to an end user the same day as me and took the cash price quoted on presells before harvest. Why Not Use An HTA And Let Someone Else Make My Margin Call?There are several reasons:–       Benefit #1 – Costs Are About The Same – I prefer to carry my own hedge because the cost of an HTA is approximately the same price as I will have in my futures brokerage and the interest on a huge margin call. HTA’s costs vary with end users, but they range from 0-8 cents with most in the 3-5 cent range. So in the above example I might have 2.75 cents of interest and 1 cent in commissions to my broker to make the trade.  Basically it’s the same cost as what my elevator charges me to handle an HTA and that is assuming a $2/bu margin call. If I have only a 50 cent margin call all year then I’m way ahead to handle my own hedge as to paying someone else more to carry my hedge. ($.50 x 5.5% / 12 months for a monthly rate x 3 months = about ¾ of a cent of total interest)–       Benefit #2 – I’m Not Locked Into Any One End User.  It allows me to go with the end user who is paying the most at, or any time after, harvest.  It’s not uncommon to see end users have 10-20 cent pushes in their bid in years with short production and large margin calls after harvest is complete to grain not already locked in with an HTA or stored at the end users facility. I want to be able to take advantage of this premium in the market. I can’t guarantee where the best bid will be 3-6 months in advance so locking my grain up with an end user now is not something I want to do. This year with the delayed harvest I saw farmers who were able to ship corn in late November directly from the field at much better basis prices than what farmers were getting in early October.  The market is always changing and having complete control over my own bushels allows me to take advantage of every available opportunity.–       Benefit #3 – Easier To Get Out Of Sales If I’m Short On Production.  If I am unable to produce corn (e.g. due to weather), it’s easier to get out of sales by moving them forward with futures to the next year I will produce grain.  Most of the time I can actually capture a profit doing this.  If I have to ask an end user to be let out of contracts, be it cash trades or HTA’s, there will probably be a penalty price. Even if the end user offers to move the sales to the following year for free that is a huge loss to me because usually there is extremely good carry in the corn market from one year to the next. This year there was over a 40 cent premium to move sales from ’18 to ’19. In the past 30 years there have been only 3 years where there wasn’t eventually a carry in the corn market (95/96, 11/12, and 12/13). Even in those years end users weren’t likely to move the sales forward at the same price.  They probably charged the difference of the spread between crop years.–       Benefit #4 – More Flexibility – For example, in 2012 when the market rallied above $7, some elevators refused to place more HTAs and in a few cases made farmers set basis on HTAs already traded when basis was near their lowest/widest value.  This happened because these elevators didn’t secure large enough lines of credit from their banks and were forced to liquidate their position.  I don’t want to have my profits reduced because of somebody else’s failure to plan ahead.  I want to be in control of my money, my bushels, and my profits.Myth – Making A Margin Call Is BadMany farmers may be shocked by this, but making a margin call can be a GOOD thing.  Here’s why….Typically, I don’t price all of my corn at one time, and I doubt most farmers do either.  I usually hold some back for potential market rallies.  As described above, I have to pay margin call on all of my priced or sold grain with every rally.  But, this means the corn I haven’t priced or sold yet is now worth more.  ALL future unsold grain is now worth more.  Since I plan to farm well into the future, I have more corn to sell, maybe not this year, but next year I will.   ***Margin call means corn you haven’t priced or sold is worth more. Embrace it.***I Understand That The Math Makes Sense, But I’m Still Too Scared Of The Margin Call.Many of the farmers I have worked with expressed reservations and fear the first year as they cut several $5,000-$10,000 margin call checks during the months of June and July (despite knowing they will eventually get it back).  It can be a lot of money.  However, once they saw that not only did they get the money back later, but they also had more opportunity at improved basis levels than their neighbor, who didn’t use futures. Typically after the first year those farmers wonder why they didn’t start using futures sooner and embrace margin call.Don’t let your fear of margin calls keep you from using the biggest marketing tool there is to hedge your grain and take advantage of market opportunities.  Savvy farmers understand it and use the tools that are available to increase profits and minimize risk.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 jon@superiorfeed.com.last_img read more