Chicago | Reuters — U.S. soybean futures rose on Thursday, snapping a three-day slide on bargain buying and signs of fresh export demand, traders said.
But corn and wheat futures fell, pressured by prospects for huge grain supplies as the U.S. autumn harvest got underway.
At the Chicago Board of Trade, November soybeans settled up 7-3/4 cents at $9.50-1/2 per bushel. December corn ended down 1-3/4 cents at $3.30 a bushel and December wheat fell 3-1/2 cents at $3.99-1/2 a bushel.
Soybeans rose after the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported export sales of U.S. soybeans in the week to Sept. 8 at more than one million tonnes, in line with trade expectations.
Also, the USDA said private exporters sold 110,000 tonnes of U.S. soybeans to unknown destinations in the last day. It was the government’s first daily soybean sales announcement in a week.
“Crude oil is one per cent higher… That strength continues to help soybeans rally, with additional support coming from strong demand,” Arlan Suderman, chief commodities economist for INTL FCStone, said in a note to clients.
The soy market withstood bearish monthly data from the National Oilseed Processors Association, which said its members crushed 131.8 million bushels of soybeans in August. The figure was down from 135.3 million a year ago and below the average analyst estimate of 136.2 million bushels.
CBOT corn sagged, retreating from early advances on disappointing weekly export sales data and pressure from the start of the U.S. harvest.
USDA reported weekly export sales of U.S. 2016-17 corn at 703,500 tonnes, below a range of trade expectations for 800,000 to 1,100,000 tonnes.
“Even though it is early in the marketing year, this already has some thinking the USDA has over-estimated total corn consumption,” Karl Setzer, analyst with Iowa-based MaxYield Cooperative, wrote in a market note.
Wheat futures closed lower in featureless trade, following declines in corn.
After the CBOT close, Egypt’s General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) set a tender to buy an unspecified amount of wheat from global suppliers.
Egypt, the world’s top wheat buyer, last month adopted a zero-tolerance policy on ergot, a grain fungus, in imported wheat. The decision has complicated its efforts to source wheat globally. GASC canceled its last international wheat tender on Aug. 31 after receiving just one offer.
— Julie Ingwersen is a Reuters correspondent covering grain markets from Chicago. Additional reporting for Reuters by Sybille de La Hamaide in Paris and Naveen Thukral in Singapore.