Wheat Prices and Corn Prices Retreat Monday

On Cyber Monday, global traders were paying attention to three things: tax reform progress, U.S. home sales, and oil prices at two-year highs.

In Chicago, however, it was all about the weather and trade data.

Wheat prices fell at all three U.S. exchanges. Corn prices dipped, and soybean prices showed some modest gains. Here’s your daily recap from the Chicago Board of Trade.

Spring Wheat Prices Crater

Spring wheat prices shed about 2% Monday. Up in Minneapolis, the December spring wheat contract shed 13.5 cents to finish the day at $6.10. The MGEX March 2018 contract finished down 11.5 cents to close at $6.27 per bushel.

In Chicago and Kansas City, wheat prices slumped as well. December SRW contracts shed another 6.25 cents to close at $4.095. The March SRW contract fell 6.5 cents and finished just a tick above $4.28.

HRW contracts for December fell another 7.25 cents to close just above $4.07. Around the globe, weaker prices from the U.S. and the European Union are affecting the competitiveness of Black Sea exports. However, markets anticipate a record-sized Russian crop. Planting in Russian wheat fields is now about 98.2% complete.

The downturn came despite some positive export data out of the USDA. Last week, the U.S. saw a weekly 32.4% jump in exports to 344,721 MT. That figure is also more than 40% higher than shipments for the same week in 2016. Markets also largely ignored news that up to 10% of the wheat crop in Argentina was impacted by frost this past weekend.

Corn Prices Wither Again

Corn prices dipped on news that exports last week fell by nearly 23% compared to the same period last year. Traders ignored delays in the plating of the Argentina corn crop, and instead focused on the data out of the European Union. According to the economic bloc’s latest estimates on corn yields, analysts expect a 3.2% annual decline to 102.9 bushels per acre.

Also, managed money increased its net-selling position on corn contracts. The December corn price fell below $3.40 and settled the day off 3.5 cents from Friday’s close. The March contract dipped another 3.25 cents and finished the day just a tick below $3.52.

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January Soybean Prices Approach $10.00

January soybean prices pushed toward $10.00 after traders continue to eye weather updates in Argentina. Dry weather continues to raise concerns about the health of the crop. Argentinean farmers have only planted about 34% of the total crop for the coming year. That figure is behind schedule. Brennan touched on the impact of weather on the Argentinean crop in this morning’s Breakfast Brief.

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The January contract added 2.75 cents and closed at $9.96. The March contract was up 3 cents after closing the day just under $10.08. Last week, speculative funds added 4,000 contracts to their net-long position on soybeans.

The gains came despite news that yield and production expectations are on the rise in Brazil. In addition, the USDA reported a 306% weekly decline in soybean export inspections. The 1.579 million metric tonnes was also off roughly 30% from the same period in 2016.

About the Author
Garrett Baldwin

Garrett Baldwin is a content strategist and editor at FarmLead. He covers the global grain markets and public policy issues related to the agricultural industry. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. He also holds a Master’s Degree in Economic Policy from The Johns Hopkins University, an MS in Agricultural Economics from Purdue University, and an MBA in Finance from Indiana University.

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