Chicago Closing Comments

01/12/11 -- Soybeans: Jan 12 Soybeans closed at USD11.28, down 3 1/4 cents; Mar 12 Soybeans closed at USD11.38 1/2, down 2 1/2 cents; Dec 11 Soybean Meal closed at USD287.20, down USD3.20; Dec 11 Soybean Oil closed at 49.52, up 25 points. Weekly export sales were a bit below expectations at 489,600 MT, China actually bought more than that themselves but there were also some switches from unknown and cancellations to take into account. Year to date accumulative sales are running well behind last year's pace. The market remains acutely nervous over European debt. The world financial system is on the brink of collapse, according to legendary financier George Soros in the Wall Street Journal.

Corn: Dec 11 Corn closed at USD5.94 3/4, down 6 1/2 cents; Mar 12 Corn closed at USD6.01 1/2, down 6 1/2 cents. Corn fell as the USDA reported another uninspiring set of weekly export figures at 352,200 MT for both old and new crop. Funds were said to have sold an estimated 8,000 contracts on the day, having been buyers all week. With export demand faltering in recent weeks it remains to be seen of domestic interest holds up once the ethanol blenders tax credit is removed at the end of the year. Six dollar corn is supposed to attract the buyers, but there hasn't been too much sign of them lately, with even the Chinese staying largely out of the market now they have their own new crop available.

Wheat: Dec 11 CBOT Wheat closed at USD6.02, up 6 1/4 cents; Dec 11 KCBT Wheat closed at USD6.63, up 12 cents; Dec 11 MGEX Wheat closed at USD8.54 1/2, up 18 1/2 cents. Weekly export sales were good and towards the upper end of trade estimates at 503,000 MT. Shipments however were poor once again and have now failed to meet the level required to meet the USDA's target for the 2011/12 marketing year in seven of the last eight weeks. Russia meanwhile is exporting record volumes of grain with over 14 MMT having been shipped out in the Jul 1st - Nov 20th timeframe, of which 12 MMT was wheat. Ukraine's sales are also picking up after a slow start with 2.2 MMT of grain being exported in November.