CBOT Closing Comments


May Soybeans closed at USD9.82 ¾, down 16 cents; May Soybean Meal at USD287, down USD7.60; May Soybean Oil at 39.12, down 17 points. Crude oil was sharply lower, and the dollar significantly higher on news that Greece and Portugal had had their credit ratings downgraded. Greece was downgraded to junk status. Stock indices also closed sharply lower. Harvesting in Brazil is now 94% completed, according to Celeres. The USDA will report on US soybean planting progress for the first time this season on Monday.


May Corn futures closed at USD3.47 ½, down 4 ¾ cents; December Corn futures were at USD3.69, down 7 ½ cents. Although last night's USDA planting progress report said that sowings are well ahead of normal, weather conditions are now turning to cool an wet. "Cumulative heat units in March and April are above last spring and normal. History shows that springtime warmth promotes fast planting and strong spring growth. However, a persistent warm pattern from spring through summer is negative for corn, reducing soil moisture and cutting the yield," says Gail Martell of Martell Crop Projections.


May CBOT Wheat closed at USD4.78 ¼, up 2 ¼ cents; May KCBT Wheat at USD4.92 ½, up 2 cents; May MGEX Wheat at USD5.16 ¼, up 3 cents. Wheat was overdue a day to slightly rebalance earlier differentials between it and corn/soybeans, although US wheat still remains over-priced globally. Yesterday's price action was almost certainly exaggerated by a large sell order mid-session.