CBOT Closing Comments


March corn closed lower in Wednesday's session. A bearish trading session since this morning across the commodities board, a sharp drop in crude oil and a weaker US dollar added up to bearish pressure on corn. Anticipation of the upcoming Monday's USDA reports supplemented to the bearish leanings, with longs taking some money off the table. This morning South Korea announced that its largest feed maker may cut corn imports by 20%. South Korea is the 3rd largest importer of US corn. This news hurts US exports of corn, adding to the bear pull. March corn closed at $4.16 1/2, down 11 cents; December corn closed at $4.60 1/2, 10 3/4 cents


Soy complex futures finished lower this trading session. A weaker crude oil and bearish pull across commodities provided the selling pressure to soy complex futures this entire session. Wetter weather conditions later this week are forecasted in key soy crop areas in Argentina. That, coupled with the outlook for increased US soy seedings in 2009 (because of the rally) added pressure for US soy. Like other grains, outside markets on top of fundamental news took away yesterday's gains of soy complex futures. January soybean finished at $9.90, down 24 1/4 cents; January soy meal finished at $295.00, down $5.30; January soy oil finished at $35.92, down $1.13.


March wheat futures in Chicago, Kansas City, and Minneapolis settled lower in today's session, taking away most of yesterday's gains. Spillover bearish pressure in grains and a renewed dismal economic outlook such as increased job losses for 2009 provided the backdrop to wheat's losses. Weaker crude oil and a bearish US stock market added more bear pressure to wheat. Recent foreign tenders for wheat are expected not to consider US wheat due to US crop being too expensive relative to cheaper, namely Black Sea and Northern European sources. Stiffer foreign competition of wheat exports continues to plague US wheat. Continuing cold weather is not considered a major threat to wheat crops in the Plains although the lack of snow cover could be an issue if temps get below zero. Wheat losses were tempered a little bit by the weakness in the US dollar. March CBOT wheat at $6.13 1/4, down 30 1/4 cents; March KCBT wheat at $6.37, down 33 cents; March MGEX wheat at $6.64, down 20 1/2 cents.