Early Call On Chicago

16/12/10 -- The overnight grains were mixed, with beans around 3-4c higher, corn up 2-3c and wheat down 1c to up 2c.

Crude oil is slightly lower and the dollar a bit weaker too.

Weekly export sales were robust for wheat, pretty decent for corn and very poor for soybeans. The economic situation in China seems to have them taking their foot off the import accelerator somewhat.

The Chinese government's cap on vegoil prices appears to be leading to planned old crop bean imports being rescheduled as processors trim back production.

The Senate passed the tax bill, but it still needs to pass the House. Assuming that it does then that's friendly for corn demand throughout 2011.

The USDA have confirmed a sale of 150,000 MT of US wheat to Jordan. Having also sold 110,000 MT yesterday to Egypt, US wheat is clearly competitively priced into the Middle East despite a freight disadvantage.

South American weather remains a concern, with Mato Grosso suddenly turning dry and the Argentina forecast turning hotter for next week, according to Martell Crop Projections.

Things are improving for Australia, except in the cricket ;-)

Early calls for this afternoon's CBOT session: corn up 2-3c, wheat fkat to up 2c, soybeans up 1-3c.