Chicago Closing Comments - Thursday

02/08/12 -- Soycomplex: Aug 12 Soybeans closed at USD16.53, down 29 1/4 cents; Nov 12 Soybeans closed at USD16.16 1/2, down 12 1/2 cents; Aug 12 Soybean Meal closed at USD523.70, down USD13.50; Aug 12 Soybean Oil closed at 51.54, down 19 points. Funds sold an estimated 7,000 soybean contracts on the day as outside influences weighed. Disappointment that neither the Fed nor the ECB were prepared to fire up the presses and print more money just yet generated a bit of "risk off" mode. The Chinese government announced that they had sold 400,907 MT of soybeans from their state reserves, the largest weekly sale in two years. Weekly export sales were below trade expectations of 250-600 TMT at 194 TMT of old crop and 52,400 MT of new crop. "Near normal temperatures are predicted in the 5-day forecast. This would be the first time since since late May that temperatures were NOT above average. The 5-day rainfall forecast is not too impressive, calling for .10 to .50 inch of rain in the Midwest corn and soybean belt. The average weekly rainfall in August is near .90 inch," say Martell Crop Projections. Brazil has exported 22.92 MMT of soybeans in the Jan–Jun time frame - 87% of their expected total exports.

Corn: Sep 12 Corn closed at USD7.94, down 6 1/2 cents; Dec 12 Corn closed at USD7.95 3/4, down 4 3/4 cents. Funds were said to have been sellers of around 5,000 corn contracts on the day, bringing their net sales to around 20,000 in the last three sessions. Weekly export sales were 178,400 MT for 2011/12 and 23,000 MT for 2012/13 delivery versus trade estimates of 0-250 TMT. China was noted to have cancelled a cargo of corn. Mexico bought almost 1 MMT of new crop US corn and over half a million of the 2013/14 crop. "July rainfall averaged only 1.72 inches and 46% of normal, based on unofficial data. Temperatures were the hottest in more than 60 years, 79.9 F and 6.4 degrees F above average. Very stressful pollinating conditions means corn damage is irreversible. Yields will be historically low from shrunken ears, reduced kernels from unsuccessful pollination and light test weights," say Martell Crop Projections. The USDA attaché in China estimates China’s 2012/13 corn crop at 195 MMT, up 1% from 2011/12.

Wheat: Sep 12 CBOT Wheat closed at USD8.65, down 14 1/2 cents; Sep 12 KCBT Wheat closed at USD8.69, down 15 cents; Sep 12 MGEX Wheat closed at USD9.26 1/2, down 11 1/2 cents. Weekly export sales of 516,200 MT of old crop and 4,500 MT of new crop were in line with expectations for sales of 400-600 TMT. Funds were estimated to have been net sellers of around 3,000 Chicago wheat contracts on the day. The winter wheat harvest in Canada has started early and yields are so far coming in 15 to 30 bushels above normal. The USDA attaché in Canada estimates the 2012/13 grain crop at 50.6 MMT, up 8% from a year ago. The size of the Russian wheat harvest is till open to much debate with estimates anywhere from 43-50 MMT. The InterFax agency estimated Ukraine’s 2012/13 grain crop at 45.0 MMT versus 56.7 MMT a year ago. Both are active sellers of wheat, although perhaps tellingly neither appear to be offering wheat for shipment beyond October. The USDA attaché in China estimates China’s 2012/13 wheat crop at 108.0 MMT versus 117.4 MMT in 2011/12. Japan bought 141 TMT of milling wheat in their regular weekly tender, including 108 TMT tonnes from the US and 33 TMT tonnes from Australia.