GRAINS-U.S. corn, soybean futures rise as demand strengthens

CHICAGO, July 28 (Reuters) – U.S. corn and soybean futures rose on Monday with both markets supported by strengthening demand and isolated dryness in some areas that could hamper development of the crops in the Midwest.

Wheat futures were lower but trimmed losses in the wake of an announcement from the U.S Department of Agriculture showing a wheat sale to Nigeria and a soybean sale to top importer China.

Soybean futures jumped as much as 2 percent following disappointing weekend rains in southwest Iowa and around the U.S. Great Lakes region, according to the Commodity Weather Group.

“The dryness has developed too late for major impact to pollinating corn, but some minor soy losses are possible to pod-setting soy in drier sections,” the firm said in a note to clients.

Analysts expected the USDA in a report due at 3 p.m. CDT (2000 GMT) to hold condition ratings for the soybean crop steady at the highest levels in 20 years while corn conditions were likely to remain the best in a decade, according to a Reuters poll.

The USDA said early on Monday that exporters sold 486,000 tonnes of soybeans to China in the tenth announcement this month of a daily sale of 100,000 or more tonnes required by law.

The government also said Nigeria bought 101,000 tonnes of wheat – 61,000 tonnes of hard red winter wheat and the rest soft red winter wheat.

The most active Chicago Board of Trade November soybeans contract finished 24-1/4 cents higher at $11.07-3/4 per bushel, rebounding from a near four-year low of $10.55 last week with the biggest daily gains since mid-May.

CBOT December corn was up 5 cents at $3.76-3/4 per bushel after last week falling to the lowest level since June 2010. The daily gain of 1.3 percent was its largest in a month.

“We’re building some weather premium back into the market ahead of a critical month for beans,” said Brian Basting, an analyst at grains advisory service Advance Trading in Bloomington, Illinois. “We’ve had some big purchases, but that’s taking a back seat to crop size. The top soil is drying out.”

Wheat prices remained anchored by favourable crop prospects in the Black Sea region.

Russia, one of the world’s key wheat exporters via the Black Sea, is likely to harvest 57.5 million tonnes of wheat in 2014, IKAR, a leading agriculture consultancy, said in a note.

“The forecast was upgraded (from a previously expected 56.3 million tonnes) thanks to higher yields in several regions,” Dmitry Rylko, the head of IKAR, added.

CBOT September wheat fell 3-1/4 cents to $5.34-3/4 a bushel while November milling wheat in Paris fell 0.8 percent to 178.25 euros a tonne.



Stories from our other publications