Chicago Close - Corn Leads As Weather Stalls Planting

02/05/13 -- Soycomplex: Weekly soybean export sales showed net cancellations of 109,800 MT, which isn't too much of a problem when you already have 99% of the USDA target on the books. New crop sales were robust at 1.34 MMT - a 2013/14 marketing year high. Trade estimates had been for net sales of 6-900 TMT. Soymeal sales of just under 150 TMT take old crop commitments to 102% of USDA projections. In addition, the USDA also announced the sale of 290 TMT of new crop soybeans to China. Bird flu in China now has over 125 human cases confirmed and 24 deaths. MDA CropCast estimated world oilseeds production in 2012/13 at 440.58 MMT, rising to 457.56 MMT in 2013/14. Informa come out with their latest world production estimates tomorrow. Last month they had Argentine soybean production at 52.0 MMT and Brazilian output at 83.25 MMT. The USDA are out next Friday with their May WASDE report which should also include their first production estimated for 2013/14. Funds were judged to have been light net sellers of around 1,000 soybean contracts on the day. May 13 Soybeans closed at USD14.41, up 3 1/2 cents; Jul 13 Soybeans closed at USD13.72 1/4, down 3/4 cent; Nov 13 Soybeans closed at USD12.04, down 2 1/2 cents; May 13 Soybean Meal closed at USD418.60, up USD3.00; May 13 Soybean Oil closed at 48.42, down 22 points.

Corn: Weekly export sales of 329,300 MT of old crop and 656,000 MT of new crop fell at the top end of trade estimates for sales of a combined 600 TMT - 1 MMT. Bad weather continues to severely hamper early planting hopes. The NWS report that up to 14 inches of snow fell in parts of Minnesota overnight/this morning. AccuWeather said that Kansas City was in for a "historic" snowfall event overnight. Many now expect that Monday's planting progress report will set a new record slow pace for the beginning of May. Michael Cordonnier estimated US corn yields in 2013 at 155-156 bu/acre. He said that the chance of yields falling below 150 bu/acre was about 20%. Equally, if everything fell into place, there's a 20% chance of yields better than 160 bu/acre, he added. The 155-156 bu/acre figure puts him in the same ballpark as the likes of Lanworth, Rabobank and MDA CropCast. The latter today held their US corn production forecast steady from last week at 337.9 MMT, up 30% on last year. "While temperatures will remain cooler than normal beyond this week, some drier weather may finally return to the Midwest by next week," they said. Informa are due to issue revised world crop production forecasts tomorrow. Last month they had Argentine corn production at 25.3 MMT, with the Brazilian crop at 71.95 MMT. ADM are said to have resumed running their US ethanol plants at full capacity due to improved margins. Fund buying was estimated at anywhere from 6-12,000 lots on the day. May 13 Corn closed at USD6.97 1/2, up 15 3/4 cents; Jul 13 Corn closed at USD6.62, up 15 1/4 cents.

Wheat: Weekly export sales for wheat came in at 219,200 MT of old crop and 497,300 MT of new crop versus trade expectations of a combined 3-500 TMT. Old crop sales need to average 259,000 MT to meet the USDA’s target for the season, assuming that everything that's sold gets shipped. Actual shipments this week were 845,200 MT, a marketing-year high, and up 56% from the previous week. The Kansas wheat tour concluded with the final tour result being a forecast of yields at 41.1 bu/acre versus 49.1 on last year's tour. Conditions apparently improved as the tour moved east. That's better than what was expected, the 10-year average Kansas wheat yield is 39.4 bu/acre. More snow is on the way tonight, which may end up ultimately to being not as detrimental as has been thought. "Temperatures should remain below normal across the Plains and western Midwest this week, keeping wheat growth very slow. However, wet weather will improve soil moisture," said MDA CropCast. They left their US winter wheat production estimate unchanged from last week at 42.2 MMT, with a further 15.2 MMT coming from spring wheat this year. Informa will release their forecasts tomorrow. Last month they had the US winter wheat crop at 1.631 billion bushels (44.4 MMT). Stats Canada also come out tomorrow with their March 31st stocks report. For all wheat stocks the average trade estimate 13.9 MMT, from within a range of estimates of 12.4-14.6 MMT. March 2012 stocks were 14.652 MMT. Fund buying was estimated at 1-2,000 CBOT contracts on the day. May 13 CBOT Wheat closed at USD7.18 3/4, up 8 1/4 cents; May 13 KCBT Wheat closed at USD8.02 1/4, up 8 cents; May 13 MGEX Wheat closed at USD8.44 3/4, up 14 3/4 cents.