A Note from the Owner of HPG LLC; Patrick J. Hayes:
At Hedge Plus Group, we realize that things have changed in the farm marketing of grains and oil seed products. From the late 1970’s to around 2004, your markets were stuck in a bearish fundamental market; a market in which normal production outpaced demand. In this environment certain farm marketing tools were proven effective in helping you market your crop. Seasonal trends could be counted on, as well as lack of volatility and other long held tools, helping make farm marketing somewhat dependable.
Starting in 2004, these trusted farm marketing tools and approaches became less and less dependable. The advent of cheap prices for such a long period of time created new long-term demand. This new and greater demand has created, for the first time in decades, volatility and uncertainty in our markets.
The surprise to many is that higher prices have led to greater risk. Stable input cost disappeared as fast as low prices. As an example, many producers were hurt by their crop sales more in 2008 than ever before, even though new highs were available. The reason was poor timing, as some bought input costs at highs in the summer of 2008 and sold their crop too late after prices had collapsed. The risk in farm marketing has never been greater.
At Hedge Plus Group, we saw a need to offer a program that was different and more equipped to handle the new market conditions. The Hedge Plus Complete Program is that program. Individual attention is the center stone to the program with each market advisor at Hedge Plus Group working with about 1/10th the number of clients of their peers to give each client the one to one advice that fits their operation. How can we give such individual attention? It’s simple, our Hedge Plus Complete advisors are paid a percentage when their Hedge Plus Complete clients renew. We take the emphasis off commissions by greatly reducing Hedge Plus Complete clients commission fees. The advisor’s attention is on You, not on trading.
Remember if you always do what you did, you will always get what you got. Also, remember that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results. At Hedge Plus Group, we are here to offer you something different.
Hedge Plus Complete Program
Hedge Plus Complete is a fee-for-service program where hedge recommendations are tied directly to your cash sales. A customized marketing plan is designed around YOUR operation and YOUR needs. Pat and his team will communicate to you all market recommendations that affect your bottom line. All hedge and cash recommendations are communicated directly to you and individualized with you in order to gain YOUR approval. You remain the boss, so you are basically hiring us on as a part of your operation to help with your marketing.
The majority of our clients are in this program because they enjoy the cash sale recommendations and cheap hedging fees. We can help you by being your eyes and ears with the goal of selling your cash crops at a higher price and we are using all tools available to add value and manage risk with the hedge account. We get to know you and your operation really well, so we know when your crop has to be sold and what kind of risk you are willing to take in your hedge account.
- 4 cents per bushel annual fee – based on average production ($3000 Minimum Annual Fee)
- Reduced trade commissions- $30.00 round turn fee
- Includes the Hedge Plus Group Report
- Hogs and Cattle (reduced grain fees applied when combined with Hogs and Cattle)
- Cash Sale Alerts, Via Broadcast message
Hedge Plus Group Report
The Hedge Plus Group Report is a weekly publication providing our market advisors’ insight and recommendations designed to help you become a better marketer. The report focuses on the bottom-line factors that affect price direction by analyzing fundamental factors and providing you with technical charts to help you better understand pricing opportunities. The Hedge Plus Group Report offers general recommendations for farmers so you know what’s driving the markets. The report can be emailed to you or is available on our website. Along with the weekly report, we also provide daily opening and closing comments to keep you as current as possible on our market thoughts.
- One year subscription to the HP Group Report through our Website is $800
Includes access to:
- Daily Opening and Closing Comments
- Hedge Plus Group Report posted on our website every Thursday afternoon
- Weekly Broadcast messages
- Cash Sale Alerts, via Broadcast message
- One year subscription to the Hedge Plus Group Report with Retail trading account is only $400 (all the same access)
- INCLUDED to clients enrolled in the Hedge Plus Group Complete Program
I started Hedge Plus in June of 2007 with the goal of being the best marketing firm in the business. Today, I continue to strive to reach that goal.
I was the eighth child of nine born into our Hayes family. I remember learning to compete and fight for what you wanted at an early age. Heck, competing for enough food at the dinner table was a battle with 4 older brothers and 3 older sisters.
I have said many times, and I truly believe it, that trading is the last form of pure competition in the world. I have always loved to compete and, therefore, it was natural for me to be drawn to working in commodities. To get a trade complete, there has to be someone willing to take the opposite side of you and at the price both of you think is a winner. What dictates who wins and who loses is based on smarts, research, dedication, hard work and fortitude. I love that challenge.
I first learned about trading way back in the 70’s from my father and, since then, I have been a speculator or/and advisor. There hasn’t been a year since 1979 (the year I graduated from college) that I haven’t traded.
I love my wife of 33 years, Jackie, and my two daughters, Callie (18) and Ana, our jock (13). I am super proud of being married and committed to Jackie. I got the deal of a life time when she said yes back in December of 1981. We tried for 15 years to start a family before Jackie was able to carry Callie to term and give us a child, and we are so blessed. Five years later, we were able to add a newborn spitfire from Guatemala, Ana, to complete our family.
I love playing sports with Ana and debating Callie, and I spend most of my free time in such pursuits. My wife and I love movies, trips and just hanging out. We are pretty much home bodies and we love it!
In reality, I love what I am doing. There are days I am up and at work before the birds are singing anticipating another day of doing what I was meant to do. There will be no one who works harder for you than I do because I love working and winning for you.
As part owner it is my job to run the day to day operations of Hedge Plus but the more important part of my job is as a market analyst. As a Senior Market Analyst it is my responsibility to oversee clients’ accounts and to make sure that the highest level of service that we strive for is demonstrated to each of my individual clients. Honesty and transparency are things that I strive for in my work as well as my personal life. Outside of work I enjoy time spent with my children and grandchildren as well as pheasant hunting with my dogs. A great day for me is having my grandson wake me up at 5:30 AM on a Saturday and proudly proclaim “Papa, I want to go fishing.”
I received an academic scholarship to Eastern Kentucky University where I received my bachelor’s degree in Homeland Security. They have one of the top programs in the country for that discipline. I excel in academic research, analysis, and writing. Before my start at Hedge Plus, I had various jobs but worked as a corporate ‘loan shark’ and tutor for most of that time.
I have been employed with Hedge Plus for 2 ½ years. I work as an administrative assistant in which I help our sales staff and advisors in opening new client accounts, process paperwork, margins, and deposits, as well as providing excellent customer service to our clients. I also assist in Cyber-Security functions for our office. I have enjoyed my time at Hedge Plus thus far and feel blessed to work for such a great company!
In my free time, I love to work out and go to the gym. I also love to travel and frequent Miami and the Caribbean. I love spending time with my family and boyfriend. I have a 4-year old teddy bear dog, Ruxpin, who’s spoiled rotten and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
I began my farm marketing career in 2006 under the tutelage of Hedge Plus owner, Patrick Hayes. I have been with Hedge Plus since day one, starting as Patrick’s right-hand man to now working with my own clients, as well as authoring daily market commentary and the weekly Hedge Plus Report.
I graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 2005 with a degree in Agricultural Business Management and it was there I learned a great deal about commodity trading and how it applies to the farm operation. My focus is helping farmers pull the trigger on cash sales for crops and livestock at the right times throughout the year and using the hedge account as a tool to add value back to the bottom line and hedge downside risk when necessary. I enjoy the challenge of working with markets where no one knows what might happen next. If my clients can feel more comfortable with their marketing, better informed before making decisions and feel like someone’s got their back, I have done my job.
Away from work, I enjoy spending time with my wife, Maggie, with whom I just celebrated our 10th anniversary, and our three kids. Makenna is 8, Camden is 5 and Heidi is 3. I love to golf and get to a few Badger and Packer football games each year.
I started at Hedge Plus in 2016 with a goal to become an industry leading Market Advisor. I will always look for new opportunities to learn so that I can maintain and sharpen my skills.
My main concentration is getting the best marketing information in the hands of my clients and potential clients so they can make the correct marketing decisions for their operation. I customize all advice so that it fits the specific needs of my clients.
I grew up just outside Mankato Minnesota. The many sports I played growing up included baseball, handball and golf. These sports helped me develop my competitive nature which has carried over to my work life. I would classify myself as ultra-competitive.
I’ve been married to my wife Jennifer for 17 great years and have a beautiful Daughter Olivia (13). Some of our favorite family activities are bonfires, listening to music, hiking with our Labrador, and watching Olivia play any of the many sports she’s involved in.
I really love what I do here at Hedge Plus! The feeling that every day is another opportunity to compete and add to the bottom line for my clients is a very rewarding experience.
My work at Hedge Plus is to assist the owner and service/sales advisors in bringing our best service to you, our clients and prospective clients. This would include editing and sending out our daily and weekly reports written by Patrick Hayes and Jason Gehler, as well as posting them on our website.
Most of my career was spent in the medical field as a medical transcriptionist. Voice recognition technology pretty much eliminated that job, so 30 years later I had to change career directions. I have been with Hedge Plus since September of 2015. I have to say that this job is one of the most interesting jobs I have had over the years. I grew up in northern Wisconsin and we had friends and family that farmed, but I never knew anything about the marketing aspect of farming. It has been an enlightening experience for me. An added plus to my job is that I truly enjoy working with all my co-workers at Hedge Plus!
My life outside of work is my family. I have been blessed with three wonderful sons, Josh, Danny and Joey. Now, I have three beautiful grandchildren, Kaleb (9), Rissa (7) and Eli (4), and they make sure things don’t get too quiet for me. I have recently married and look forward to my new adventure in life with my husband, Jeffrey. For fun, we love to hike in the woods, fish in the nearby lakes & rivers and swim in our backyard pool. With the valleys in life that we all experience, I have learned to enjoy the simple things in life and my motto has become “One Day at a Time.”
I graduated from Western Illinois University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Business.
Prior to becoming a licensed broker in 2014, I worked in the seed industry as a Production Agronomist for 15 years and a Sales Agronomist for 2 years. I started with Hedge Plus in 2012 and enjoy my work here as a market advisor.
I was raised on a grain and livestock farm in West Central Illinois where my family continues to farm. My wife, Mandy, and I enjoy returning to the farm whenever possible with our three kids. I spend much of my time enjoying the kids interests in sports and 4-H activities. My hobbies include tending to a large garden in the summer months and skiing in the winter with the kids.
I graduated from the University of Detroit with a Major in Finance and Mechanical Engineering.
I started my professional career designing engines but made my way back to the financial side of the world about four years ago when I was looking for a new professional challenge. I had been trading for myself for several years and had been taking many trading classes to gain a better understanding of how the markets move and several factors that help form these moves.
I made the move to Hedge Plus and now work with a team of professionals I respect and admire. I have a much better respect for the commodity markets as well. I am able to assess and understand these volatile markets and I try very hard to present all the options to my clients. I focus on introducing new clients to what we do and how we work with prospective clients. I bring a scientific background to my market research. I want my clients to have a comfort level in all the transactions we offer.
Each new client is a new opportunity to see how I can help their portfolio grow. It’s exciting for me when I see them understand and join in the “fun.” The Hedge Plus Team is a great place to experience that! Come join us!
I was introduced to farming early. My mother’s family were dairy farmers in the Oshkosh, Wisconsin area and I spent many summer days helping on the farms. Milking, picking stones and spreading manure was time well spent. It taught me hard work and an appreciation for the farming life. The US Army Signal Corps took me into telecommunications and after graduating from Milwaukee School of Engineering I worked for MCI/Verizon, Qwest and Windstream in various engineering and sales roles.
I joined the team at Hedge Plus in April 2014 and focused on helping farmers learn about Hedge Plus and how we can improve their marketing and increase their bottom line. Recently I have been assisting Senior Advisors with account management and trading activities.
Away from work I enjoy time with family and friends. I have been married for 17 years to Jeanne and together we have two grown daughters. I love to spend my free time in the outdoors hunting and fishing or watching the Milwaukee Brewers, Green Bay Packers and the Iowa Hawkeyes (daughter is an alumna).
I take pride in providing our clients with timely market information and a commitment to finding solutions to lower their risk. My best day at work is helping a farmer improve their bottom line.
In October of 2010, I was offered a part-time position as an administrative professional to mostly complete administrative duties and assist the staff at Hedge Plus LLC. The company and I clicked, and here I am, almost 10 years later, working many different positions with a lot of experience under my belt. My current contributions to the company come in a variety of positions from basic administrative duties to compliance supervision responsibilities. Throw in a bit of HR and IT support and the work never gets boring! I find the most rewarding part of my job is conversing and getting to know the many clients we have.
When I am not at the office, I am spending time with my three (almost grown) children and husband. In my spare time, I enjoy watching American crime drama series like Criminal Minds and sappy Hallmark movies.
Writing about agriculture and commodity markets is the culmination of a rich journalism career that has taken me from my hometown in west Michigan to both the left and right coasts and back again to the Mitten State.
After acquiring invaluable on-the-job experience and earning a BA degree in history from Michigan State University, I broke into the “big time” in California with United Press International. I learned from some of the best reporters, editors and pure writers in the business and covered more national news stories and big games than I can count. My mother was so proud of me when I covered Queen Elizabeth’s state visit to the West Coast. I met my wife, another cub reporter at the time, behind the crime-scene tape at a major massacre in San Diego where 21 people were killed and 19 more injured.
My peripatetic UPI career took me to Washington D.C. and later to Los Angeles where I held the dual role of Western Regional Correspondent and Chief Energy Correspondent, covering California’s tangled water policy and the rise to ethanol. I learned the ropes of the commodity industry as a price reporter for Standard & Poor’s in New York and Los Angeles, setting daily contract price ranges for physical trades of gasoline, jet fuel, diesel and marine bunkers. During this time period, I learned about the gastronomical delights of sushi from the Long Beach oil traders and saw gas prices top $2 per gallon for the first time.
I also spent a productive tenure at a trade magazine for convention-and-tradeshow managers and also covered the expansion of green energy at Daily Energy Insider.
My wife, Kristina, and I have enjoyed a long, awesome marriage and have a grown son who graduated with top honors from UC Berkeley and works in finance and investing in Southern California. We enjoy playing ball at the beaches of Northern San Diego County and Lake Michigan, and are fortunate to have longtime dear friends across the nation.