Corn and Ethanol Futures

This chart plots corn in green with prices on the left margin and ethanol prices in red and on the right margin. Typically corn and ethanol travel in a somewhat similar direction. Last year when covid-19 started having a major impact, corn prices were falling slightly but ethanol prices collapsed. That collapse in ethanol prices promoted a reduction in corn use in ethanol plants as more and more ethanol plants were being shut down. In Jan, Feb, and Mar, corn prices shown in green were rallying and ethanol prices shown in red were rallying. Then both corn and ethanol shot sharply higher in April and into May. But recently corn prices have collapsed while ethanol prices have held steady around $2.33/gal over the past 2-3 weeks. This combination of sharply lower corn prices and steady ethanol prices has allowed those margins to increase dramatically at ethanol plants and that is very good news for demand for corn.