Early Call On Chicago

03/01/11 -- The overnights closed with beans 2-4c higher, corn up 3-4c and wheat leading the way 15-20c firmer.

Wheat is gaining on a continuation of Australia's woes and ideas that quality material is getting more and more scarce. Crude oil is a bit firmer and the dollar also slightly steadier.

Globex wheat easily broke through the psychologically important USD8/bushel mark, with front month March ending at USD8.15/bu. European wheat futures were sharply higher in Paris, also lending some support. Contract highs were also set by Paris corn and rapeseed.

In Argentina, corn and soybean production is under threat from dry conditions, with the best chance of decent rains a week away yet, according to QT Weather.

Wheat producing areas in northern China are also too dry, as indeed are parts of the US Plains, there is talk too of a severe cold snap threatening winterkill on unprotected winter wheat in the Midwest.

Egypt may import 10.2 MMT of wheat in the 2010/11 marketing year, according to the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service. That's 400,000 MT more than the USDA's latest estimate.

Beans and corn traded lower for much of the overnight session, but got dragged higher by wheat towards the close.

Early calls for this afternoon's first CBOT session of 2011: Wheat up 15-20c, corn up 2-4c, beans 1-3c higher.