Chicago | Reuters — U.S. soybean futures dipped to a 2-1/2 week low on Wednesday as forecasts for much-needed rains in portions of Brazil’s crop area prompted a round of long liquidation and profit-taking, traders said.
Wheat futures rose, rebounding on bargain buying a day after the benchmark Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) March contract fell to a two-month low, and corn futures turned up, rallying from early weakness.
CBOT January soybeans settled down nine cents at $11.53 per bushel after falling to $11.42-1/2, the contract’s lowest since Nov. 13 (all figures US$).
CBOT March wheat ended up 11-1/4 cents at $5.88-1/2 a bushel, and March corn finished up three cents at $4.23-3/4 a bushel.
Soybeans declined as traders focused on forecasts for improving crop weather in portions of Brazil, the world’s biggest soy exporter.
“The increased rainfall across most of Brazil over the next week will begin to reduce stress on the corn and soybean crops. Follow-up rains will be needed to completely end the dryness,” Kyle Tapley, a meteorologist with space technology company Maxar, wrote in a client note.
Commodity funds hold a large net long position in CBOT soybean futures, leaving the market vulnerable to bouts of long liquidation. So far in 2020, benchmark soybean futures are up about 21%.
Forecasters Datagro and StoneX on Tuesday raised their estimates for Brazil’s 2020-21 soybean crop to 134.98 million tonnes and 133.9 million tonnes respectively.
CBOT wheat climbed in a bounce from two-month lows hit on Tuesday.
“Wheat led the ags higher as end-user buying returns on the recent price break, with corn following for similar reasons,” Arlan Suderman, chief commodities economist for StoneX, a commercial brokerage, wrote in a client note.
CBOT wheat futures have eased since hitting multi-year highs in October, pulled down by inconsistent demand for U.S. supplies, with Black Sea suppliers continuing to win business.
— Reporting for Reuters by Sybille de La Hamaide in Paris and Naveen Thukral in Singapore.