Chicago Dips Ahead Of USDA Numbers

28/03/12 -- Soybeans: May 12 Soybeans closed at USD13.67 1/2, down 2 1/4 cents; Nov 12 Soybeans closed at USD13.20 1/2, down 7 1/4 cents; May 12 Soybean Meal closed at USD377.70, up USD1.70; May 12 Soybean Oil closed at 54.60, down 50 points. Beans were dragged lower by corn and wheat, although they still look the strongest leg of the sector. Funds were said to be net sellers of 3,000 contracts on the day in light profit-taking ahead of Friday's USDA reports. South American crop estimates keep shrinking, with one private analyst pegging Argentine soybean production at 42.6 MMT, almost 4 MMT lower than the USDA's current figure. Estimates for tomorrow's weekly export sales report are 450,000 to 750,000 MT.

Corn: May 12 Corn closed at USD6.20 1/4, down 10 1/2 cents; Dec 12 Corn closed at USD5.36 1/4, down 14 cents. Funds were said to have sold a hefty 20,000 contracts on the day, which would place them exiting around 35-40,000 on the week so far. Do they know something we don't? Friday's acreage report is widely expected to show a sharp jump in corn plantings which typically produce four times the yield of soybeans, although there are obviously other considerations such as crop rotation and higher inputs for corn. To clarify on a point made yesterday, there have been 6 limit up or limit down moves out of the last seven days when the quarterly stocks reports have been released. Before that we get the weekly export sales numbers tomorrow, the trade is expecting sales of 600 and 900 thousand MT.

Wheat: May 12 CBOT Wheat closed at USD6.30 3/4, down 9 cents; May 12 KCBT Wheat closed at USD6.70, down 9 cents; May 12 MGEX Wheat closed at USD7.97 3/4, down 8 1/2 cents. Funds were said to have added 3,000 Chicago contracts to their short position today. India said that it would harvest a record wheat crop in excess of 90 MMT this year, with consumption estimated at 83 MMT that will increase their reserves and/or allow them to export. Egypt bought one cargo of US wheat, plus another of Argentine origin. European and Black Sea origins proved to be too expensive. Estimates for tomorrow's weekly export sales are 450,000 to 750,000 MT.