Chicago Closing Comments - Wednesday

08/05/13 -- Soycomplex: Beans closed mixed with the nears firmer, supported by very tight old crop supplies. The USDA announced the sale of 115 TMT of new crop soybeans to China. Chinese customs data has their soybean imports in April down 18.4% versus April 2012 at 3.98 MMT, taking the 2013 calendar year to date imports to 15.47 MMT, which is down 14.8% on a year ago. Bird flu in China has now affected 129 people with 31 dead. Reports say that poultry sales in the east of the country are down 80%. Soybean shipments out of the US have declined recently, but are already at 93% of the USDA target for the season. Shipments plus outstanding sales stand at 98.5% of the USDA's 36.74 MMT target for the season. Trade estimates for tomorrow's weekly export sales report for soybeans are 400-700 TMT. Last week's sales showed net cancellations of 109,800 MT for old cop along with new crop sales of 1.34 MMT - a 2013/14 marketing year high. Soymeal sales of just under 150 TMT last week took old crop commitments to 102% of USDA projections. The market is looking for 2012/13 ending stocks to come in near 123 million bushels in Friday’s USDA report, down slightly from 125 million last month. The average 2013/14 ending stocks estimate is 235 million bushels, versus 250 million at the USDA Outlook Forum in February. Funds were estimated to have bought 2-4,000 soybean contracts on the day. May 13 Soybeans closed at USD14.79, up 15 1/2 cents; Jul 13 Soybeans closed at USD13.90 3/4, up 8 1/2 cents; Nov 13 Soybeans closed at USD12.14 1/4, down 1 1/2 cents; May 13 Soybean Meal closed at USD425.30, up USD9.00; May 13 Soybean Oil closed at 48.66, down 43 points.

Corn: As with soybeans nearby months were supported by the tight cash market. Weekly ethanol production came in at 843,000 barrels per day, down 14,000 bpd from last week. That may have been a function of lack of available corn supplies as much as anything else. Production needs to come in at around 868,000 bpd to meet the USDA's target for the season. The trade is expecting significant Midwest planting progress to have been made this week, versus only 12% as of Sunday night. "Rainfall has tapered off significantly in the past 2 weeks, but the past 30 days have been extremely wet with two to three times the normal rainfall. Soggy field conditions have continued, prohibiting planting in the low-lying areas especially. The wise producer would wait to plant until soils have drained sufficiently. Otherwise, corn would develop a shallow root system, increasing vulnerability to drought stress later on," say Martell Crop Projections. Two South Korean buyers bought 130,000 MT of South American corn for Jul/Aug shipment. The market is looking for 2012/13 US ending stocks to come in at 750 million bushels in Friday's USDA report, down from 757 million in April. The USDA will also release their first 2013/14 estimate with ending stocks projected to come in at 1.99 billion bushels, versus the USDA Outlook Forum estimate of 2.177 billion. Trade estimates for tomorrow's weekly export sales report for corn are 400-800,000 MT. Last week's sales were 329,300 MT of old crop and 656,000 MT of new crop. Funds were estimated to have been net sellers of around 6-7,000 corn contracts on the day. May 13 Corn closed at USD6.75, down 1 1/2 cents; Jul 13 Corn closed at USD6.33, down 7 cents.

Wheat: Wheat was lower early on but posted a mini recovery late in the session on what was probably a bit of short-covering ahead of Friday's USDA report. Planting delays continue to be supportive for spring wheat in Minneapolis. The trade is estimating 2013/14 US all wheat production to come in at 2.060 billion bushels on Friday versus 2.269 in 2012/13 and a little under the USDA Outlook Forum estimate of 2.100 billion. US ending stocks for 2013/14 are estimated at 656 million bushels versus the forum estimate of 639 million. Jordan bought 50 TMT of optional origin wheat in a tender for 150 TMT. Libya are tendering for 50 TMT each of both hard and soft wheat. Japan are tendering for 120 TMT of feed wheat and 200 TMT of feed barley for shipment by the end of August. Australia got some heavy rain in the west, the same front will push onto South Australia by the weekend and on into the east of the country early next week. That should improve planting conditions there. Ukraine and Russia are a bit dry. Canada, the Northern Plains and Upper Midwest are warming up this week, but there's still a chance of a frost Sunday/Monday morning, according to Martell Crop Projections. Winter wheat in Kansas has had potentially yield boosting 1-2 inch rains in the past 24 hours. Trade estimates for tomorrow's weekly export sales report are 3-800 TMT. Last week's sales came in at 219,200 MT of old crop and 497,300 MT of new crop. With only 4 weeks of the 2012/13 wheat marketing year left to run shipments plus outstanding sales are at 93% of the USDA's target for exports of 28.5 MMT this season. Funds were estimated to have sold 2,000 contracts of Chicago wheat on the day. May 13 CBOT Wheat closed at USD6.96 3/4, down 2 3/4 cents; May 13 KCBT Wheat closed at USD7.71 3/4, up 2 cents; May 13 MGEX Wheat closed at USD8.57 3/4, unchanged.