U.S. grains: Wheat, corn, soybeans surge on technical, bargain buying

(Michael Thompson photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

Chicago | Reuters — U.S. soybean, corn and wheat futures rallied on Monday, rebounding from sharp losses on a round of bargain buying, traders said.

“People are coming back from holiday and saying ‘look at how hard things got hit’ and maybe thinking that it was a little overdone,” said A/C Trading Co. president Jim Gerlach.

Soybeans posted the biggest gains, rising 3.8 per cent and snapping a four-session losing streak. A flash sale of U.S. soybeans to China added fuel to the rally.

Chicago Board of Trade soybeans for March delivery closed up 37-3/4 cents at $10.45-1/4 a bushel (all figures US$). Prices rallied through resistance at their 100-day moving average early in the trading day, sparking a round of technical buying that pushed the contract through its 40-day and 50-day moving averages by the end of the session.

Corn futures for March delivery were up 10-1/4 cents at $4.06 a bushel.

Both corn and soybeans were receiving additional support from some forecasts for dry weather in key growing areas of Brazil.

CBOT March wheat settled 7-3/4 cents higher at $5.89 a bushel.

A cold snap across the U.S. raised concerns about damage to the dormant winter wheat crop, with the largest areas of concern in eastern Nebraska and northern Missouri.

“Wheat was up all session on talk of winterkill threats for both the U.S. soft red winter wheat areas and the former Soviet Union wheat areas, plus some talk that China bought a couple of cargos of U.S. wheat,” ED+F Man Capital analyst Charlie Sernatinger said in a note to clients.

European traders said China bought about 120,000 tonnes of hard wheat in the past few days, deals that may have included U.S. and Australian supplies.

— Mark Weinraub is a Reuters correspondent covering grain markets from Chicago. Additional reporting for Reuters by Colin Packham and Nigel Hunt in London.

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