Chicago Close

03/10/11 -- Soybeans: Nov 11 Soybeans closed at USD11.77 1/2, down 1 1/2 cents; Jan 12 Soybeans closed at USD11.88 3/4, down 3/4 cent; Oct 11 Soybean Meal closed at USD303.20, down USD1.50; Oct 11 Soybean Oil closed at 49.76, down 19 points. Prices recovered from overnight lows which saw beans trading with double digit losses, however they also slumped from intra-day highs which saw them post double digit gains at one point too. Greek debt worries continue to add pressure. The USDA upped the good/excellent rating after the close by one point to 54%, with harvesting 19% complete. FCStone increased their US crop production estimate to 3.157 billion bushels using a yield of 42.8 bushels/acre, up 72 million and a bushel/acre on the USDA's September numbers.

Corn: Dec 11 Corn closed unchanged at USD5.92 1/2; Mar 12 Corn closed at USD6.06, up 1/4 cent. As with beans corn traded both sides, but an unchanged close hardly represents a major reversal. Bulls remain shocked by the sudden about turn in the market having bought into the "incredibly tight stocks" story for months now. It would seem that last year's production numbers were probably underestimated by the USDA leaving us with more stocks now than the market realised. Lower corn usage, yet flat wheat consumption, across the summer may be partially explained by increased utilisation of DDGS. The USDA left good/excellent crop conditions unchanged at 52%, with the harvest said to be 21% complete.

Wheat: Dec 11 CBOT Wheat closed at USD6.19 1/2, up 10 1/4 cents; Dec 11 KCBT Wheat closed at USD7.04 3/4, up 3/4 cent; Dec 11 MGEX Wheat closed at USD8.83 1/2, down 8 3/4 cents. There was a correction in the Chicago/Minneapolis spread following strong gains by the latter last week. Funds were said to have bought 5,000 Chicago contracts on the day, although they still hold a significant short position. Winter wheat plantings were placed at 42% done, 11 points behind normal. Growers will be hoping that the widespread soaking rains in the 7-15 day forecasts do indeed turn up. Russia will harvest 93 MMT of grain, 3 MMT more than the government target, according to the head of the Grain Union there.