CBOT Closing Comments


March soybean futures closed at USD9.65 ½, up 20 ½ cents, November soybean futures at USD9.41, up 19 cents; March soymeal futures at USD283.90, up USD3.90; March soy oil futures at 38.95, up 111 points. Spec funds have been selling beans lately as the harvest in Brazil gathers pace, and are heavily short. A fourth steadier session in a row seems to have got a few nervous, prompting some short-covering. Some marketeers also point to a very strong seasonal trend towards the market bottoming in February, the so-called John Deere low, which may also be promoting some buying despite record production in the pipeline from South America.


March corn futures finished at USD3.67 ¼, up 5 ¾ cents, and May corn futures at USD3.79, up 5 ¾ cents. Spillover strength from beans and wheat helped corn, as did a weak dollar and strong crude oil. Weekly export inspections were up about 5 million bushels from last year, and accumulated exports are about 7 million bushels ahead of last year at this time. A lack of farmer selling and some lingering uncertainty that the USDA's January crop production report may have been overstated for corn also provided some underlying support.


March CBOT wheat futures closed at USD5.05, up 18 ½ cents; March KCBT wheat futures at USD5.12 ½, up 18 cents; March MGEX wheat futures at USD5.20 ½, up 16 cents. These were the biggest daily gains of the year so far for wheat as a weak dollar and firmer outside markets boosted prices from the off, as too did a more optimistic mood in equities. ABARE lowered their forecast for the 2009/10 Australian wheat crop to 21.7 MMT down from 22 MMT in December. Wheat inspections for export were at 15.982 million bushels, that implies that US exports this marketing year will reach around 816 million bushels, some 9 million short of the existing export target.