Chicago closing comments, soy and corn up, wheat mixed, rice limit down

Soggy weather in the U.S. corn belt pushed CBOT cornfutures higher Wednesday, although gains were limited by outside markets,traders said. Heavy rains have caused flooding and will require farmers to replant throughout the southern corn belt, particularly central Illinois, analysts say. Weakness in crude oil limited corn's gains, traders said. July corn finished up6 1/2 cents to $6.14 1/2

U.S. wheat prices closed mostly higher on spillover strength from firm CBOT corn and soybeans. Fundamentals for wheat look bearish amid expectations for a record world crop in 2008-09, reports of solid early harvest results in the U.S, and rains in Australia. July wheat rose 2 1/2 cents to$7.53 per bushel, KCBT July wheat jumped 2 cents to $7.90, and MGE July wheat tumbled 35 cents to $9.40.

CBOT soybean futures rallied Wednesday, climbing to multi-week highs on bullish demand outlooks, planting and emergence concerns and technical momentum. Prices rose steadily throughout the day, with no drastic movements except for a little boost at the end of the day, analysts said. However, soybeans rode technical momentum past some recent highs, andwere supported by rainy weather and forecasts for more rain, analysts added. Meanwhile, the market still remains under the spectre of Argentina, as the strike in Argentina continues to be supportive. The strike has caused "very firm" Brazil export prices, which is adding to the strike's effect on prices, aCBOT floor broker said.

New crop futures spiked on planting concerns, as Midwest rains push back the seeding of the final 18 to 20 million acres of U.S. soybeans that are already behind there average pace for this time of year, traders added. July soybeans settled 29 1/2 cents higher at $13.89, and Nov soybeans ended 26 cents higher at $13.79 3/4 a bushel.

CBOT rice futures ended limit down on speuclative selling and improved supply prospects, an analyst said. Price Futures VicePresident Jack Scoville said falling Thai rice prices pressured CBOT rice. Hea dded that the world supply situation does not seem as urgent as it once did. "For the minute, it seems like things are a little better," Scoville said. "I'm not too sure that will last for the long term." A trader said the selling started in Nov and spilled over into July. July rice closed down 50 cents to $18.61 per hundredweight, while Sep and Nov both ended down 50 cents to $18.08.