eCBOT Close, Early Call

The overnight grains closed firmer, with nearby beans up 14 cents to $12.60/bu, corn up around 3 cents and wheat 5-6 cents firmer.

Once again a weak dollar and firmer crude oil is supportive for the grains. The US Energy Dept. said that crude stocks fell 4.4 million barrels last week, much more sharply than had been anticipated. Chinese crude oil purchases and imports were also up.

The USDA's weekly export sales report was bullish for corn and wheat and bearish for soybeans. Beans saw negative sales for old crop for the second week running, however with the USDA yesterday reporting a stocks/usage of just 3.6% the supply side remains incredibly tight.

The US weather may be finally set to play ball, according to QT Weather's Allen Motew. The corn crop has finally transitioned to wanting timely, periodic moisture and no sustained heat, and it looks like it will get it for the remainder of this month, he says. Despite several potentially damaging “scares” of strong ridging and temperatures soaring to 100 degrees later this month. The good news is these conditions will be part of the “roller-coaster” ride of “quick peaks” of intense heat and “valleys” of cooling rains for the remainder of the month, he adds.

Early calls for this afternoon's CBOT session: Corn 3 to 5 higher, Soybeans 5 to 8 higher, Wheat 4 to 6 higher.