Chicago Closing Comments - Wednesday

17/04/13 -- Soycomplex: The market managed to shrug off some of the continued negativity in outside markets and close higher, posting double digit gains in nearby May 13 beans. Abiove lowered their estimate for Brazil’s 2012/13 soybean crop from 82.3 MMT to 82.1 MMT, placing the harvest at 85% complete. They estimated Brazil’s 2012/13 soybean exports at 38.2 MMT versus a previous estimate of 38.5 MMT, and increased their 2012/13 ending stocks from 3.1 MMT to 3.4 MMT. Brazil dock workers are due to stage a one day strike tomorrow, causing further shipping delays. There's continued talk of China shopping for US soybeans out of the PNW due to Brazilian port congestion. Argentine truckers are also set to strike on April 22nd. Weekly soybean export sales for tomorrow are estimated at a combined 400-700 TMT for both crop years, old crop sales are already 99% of the USDA's projected 36.741 MMT for the season. Fund buying was estimated at 4-5,000 soybean contracts on the day. May 13 Soybeans closed at USD14.22 1/4, up 10 3/4 cents; Jul 13 Soybeans closed at USD13.80, up 4 3/4 cents; May 13 Soybean Meal closed at USD407.30, up USD6.00; May 13 Soybean Oil closed at 49.39, up 41 points.

Corn: New crop corn got support from weather conditions in the Midwest looking like continuing to delay early planting hopes, and talk of some switching into soybeans. "Another hard freeze is predicted this week with a fresh cold outbreak. Lows in the mid-upper 20s F would develop Thursday morning on the High Plains and throughout hard red winter wheat Friday morning," say Martell Crop Projections. Nebraska is in for temperatures 25 F below normal as a fresh cold wave hits the state, they add. Not all the corn news is bullish though, Brazilian firm SOMAR said that they expect an "outstanding" 2nd corn crop due to ongoing rains keeping soil moisture levels high. Weekly US ethanol production fell to 832,000 barrels/day from 854,000 bpd last week and versus 884,000 bpd a year ago. Output needs to average around 840,000 bpd to meet the USDA's target for the season. Argentina have raised the biodiesel blend rate to 10% from 7% currently. The German Farm Coop DRV estimated the 2013 German corn crop at 4.32 MMT, down 21.4% from a year ago. Italy's Jan grain imports were up 21% to 911 MMT, with corn imports more than doubling to 404 TMT. Weekly corn export sales for tomorrow are forecast at 250-500 TMT. Fund buying was estimated at a net 3,000 corn contracts on the day. May 13 Corn closed at USD6.60 1/2, down 2 3/4 cents; Jul 13 Corn closed at USD6.41 1/4, up 1/2 cent.

Wheat: A choppy session saw wheat move higher in early trade, only to give up those gains later in the session to close around unchanged. As with corn uncooperative US weather is supportive for new crop. Fargo in North Dakota hasn't reached 50 F on any day this calendar year so far, breaking a 131 year old record. As well as spring wheat planting delays, we also have worries about freeze damage to winter wheat in the US. "Kansas temperatures are set plummet to the low 20s F Friday morning and Oklahoma mid to upper 20s F. This would be similar to the April 10 freeze, only now it is a week later when crop development is more advanced," said Martell Crop Projections. Russia’s Grain Union estimated the 2013 Russian grain crop at 90-95 MMT versus a previous estimate of 90.0 MMT, they pegged the 2013/14 exportable surplus at 20.0 MMT, unchanged from their previous estimate. DRV cut their German all wheat forecast from 23.6 MMT to 23.2 MMT, although that's still up 8.4% on last year's 21.4 MMT. Toepfer suggested that the German wheat crop will be lower than that at 22.87 MMT. Jordan passed on their 100 TMT wheat tender once again, and immediately re-tendered for the same. Libya bought 50 TMT of Russian wheat. Tomorrow's weekly export sales for wheat are estimated at 200-450 TMT. Fund buying in CBOT wheat was estimated at 1,000 contracts on the day. May 13 CBOT Wheat closed at USD7.03 3/4, up 1/4 cent; May 13 KCBT Wheat closed at USD7.42, up 1/4 cent; May 13 MGEX Wheat closed at USD8.08 1/4, down 1 1/2 cents.