Chicago Soybeans End Above USD15/bu For First Time Since 2008

30/04/12 -- Soybeans: May 12 Soybeans closed at USD15.03, up 6 1/4 cents; Nov 12 Soybeans closed at USD13.80 3/4, up 18 3/4 cents; May 12 Soybean Meal closed at USD434.10, up USD6.70; May 12 Soybean Oil closed at 54.77, down 41 points. Old crop May 12 got its first close above USD15/bu since July 2008 and new crop gained on old crop following the announcement by the USDA of 220,000 MT of soybeans sold to China for 2012/13 delivery. Ag Rural cut its Brazilian soybean production estimate to 66.24 MMT following the recent theme that South American production keeps shrinking. Soybean export inspections were 15.45M bushels, better than last week and year ago levels. Funds were said to have bought 4,000 soybean contracts on the day. After the close the USDA estimated the US soybean crop at 12% planted versus 2% last year and 5% on average.

Corn: May 12 Corn closed at USD6.60 1/4, up 7 1/4 cents; Dec 12 Corn closed at USD5.44 1/2, up 5 3/4 cents. Old crop availability remains tight, as evidenced by the lack of deliveries against the May contract for which today was the first delivery date. Weekly export inspections were only so so though at 24.92M bushels. After the close the USDA pegged corn plantings well ahead of expectations at 53% complete. The trade had been expecting 40-45% done, which in itself would have been well advanced on the normal five year average of 27%. That may be a negative influence in the morning. Illinois is 79% planted, versus 29% normally, whilst Iowa went from 9% done to 50% complete in a single week. Funds were said to have bought 10,000 contracts on the day. The APK Inform Agency say that Ukraine may export 14 MMT of corn this season, a figure comparable with that from the USDA and almost three times the volume exported in 2010/11.

Wheat: May 12 CBOT Wheat closed at USD6.47 1/2, up 5 1/4 cents; May 12 KCBT Wheat closed at USD6.50, up 3 1/2 cents; May 12 MGEX Wheat closed at USD7.79 1/4, up 5 1/4 cents. US wheat managed to win a share of Saudi Arabia's 450,000 MT purchase of hard wheat over the weekend. The the tender was well spread out amongst the EU, Australia, Canada and Argentina. Weekly export inspections were only 19.83M bushels versus 25.16M last week and 36.75M a year ago. After the close the USDA pegged winter wheat good/excellent up one point to 64%. Spring wheat plantings were said to be 74% completed compared with the 5 year average of only 32%. Eastern European drought concerns could be eased by cooler and wetter conditions in the forecast for later in the week. The Russian Minister of Agriculture said Friday that the country will harvest 94 MMT of grains in 2012, pegging winter crop losses at 7.5% which is about average.