Chicago Grains Lower, Corn At New 4-Year Lows

21/07/14 -- Soycomplex: Beans closed lower. Weather forecasts call for a couple of days of Midwest heat followed by a relatively cool and non-threatening start to the key pod filling month of August. "August weather will strongly influence the Midwest soybean yield as this is period when pod filling occurs. Seeds developing pods are enlarged with above-normal rainfall in August, boosting the yield," said Martell Crop Projections. The USDA announced 135,000 MT of US meal sold to unknown for 2014/15 delivery. Exporters keep finding old crop beans to sell too, they USDA also announced 120,000 MT of US beans sold to China for 2013/14 delivery. Chinese customs data shows that the country imported 6.4 MMT of soybeans in June, down 7.76% from a year ago. Jan-Jun imports are now 34.2 MMT, up 24.43% from a year ago. After the close the USDA raised their soybean good/excellent crop ratings by a point on last week to 73% versus 64% this time last year. Last week's ratings were already the best in 20 years. They said that 60% of the crop is blooming, up from 41% a week ago and versus 56% for the 5-year average. They said that 19% of the crop is setting pods compared to the 5-year average of 17% at this time. Fund money is now short on beans for the first time since 2011, according to Friday's CFTC data. They were estimated as adding a further 6-7,000 lots to that position today. Aug 14 Soybeans closed at $11.75 3/4, down 1 cent; Nov 14 Soybeans closed at $10.71 1/2, down 13 3/4 cents; Aug 14 Soybean Meal closed at $380.70, up $0.40; Aug 14 Soybean Oil closed at 36.14, down 43 points.

Corn: The corn market closed around 6-7 cents lower, setting fresh 4-year lows. The market views current weather conditions as non threatening. "The week is beginning on a warm note with mid and upper 80s F, but by Wednesday afternoon much cooler Canadian air would begin descending into Central United States. By midweek, a much cooler weather pattern would develop, mid 70s F for highs and mid 50s F for lows. Coolness in July is a mixed blessing, on the one hand holding down evaporation and conserving soil moisture. However, corn development would be set back increasing worries about potential freeze damage in the fall. July is the warmest month of the growing season, so reduced heat units would have a strong impact," said Martell Crop Projections. Chinese customs data shows them importing only 27,250 MT of corn in June, taking the calendar year to date total to less than 1.4 MMT, down 9.52% from a year ago. The EU Commission's MARS unit estimated EU-28 corn yields at an average 7.23 MT/ha, up from the 7.18 MT/ha forecast last month, 7.6% up on last year and 6.6% above the 5-year average. Talk of more feed wheat around in Europe this year also leans bearish for corn. After the close the USDA held steady with their good/excellent crop ratings for corn at 76% (also said to be the highest rating in years). They said that 56% of the crop was silking, up from 34% last week and in line with the 5-year average of 55%. Fund money was judged to have been a net seller of around 7,000 lots on the day. Sep 14 Corn closed at $3.64, down 7 1/4 cents; Dec 14 Corn closed at $3.72, down 6 1/2 cents.

Wheat: The wheat market closed around 2-7 cents lower across the three exchanges. The market remains concerned that the US is missing export business to foreign competition, especially to the likes of Russia, Romania and Ukraine. The ongoing geo-political problems in the region are keeping shorts a little nervous though, as we saw last Thursday immediately following the news of the shooting down of the Malaysia Airlines jet. Private Egyptian buyers were reported to have bought 60,000 MT of Black Sea origin wheat. Pakistan were said to have bought 130,000 MT of Black Sea origin wheat for Jul-Aug shipment. Russia's Jul 1-16 grain exports were said to be in excess of 1 MMT, up 47% on a year ago. That total included more than 800 TMT of wheat. Algeria bought 200 TMT of optional origin feed barley for Nov-Dec shipment in a tender. Chinese customs data shows them importing 112,254 MT of wheat in June, down 48.83% versus June 2013. Calendar year to date wheat imports are now nearly 2.6 MMT for the half year though, up 82.86% versus the same period in 2013. Ukraine said that they'd harvested over 16 MMT of new crop early grains (excluding corn), including nearly 11 MMT of wheat. The EU Commission's MARS unit estimated EU-28 soft wheat yields at 5.80 MT/ha, marginally down on the 5.81 MT/ha forecast last month (which was also the average yield in Europe last year), but up 4.2% on the 5-year average. The USDA said that the 2014 US winter wheat harvest was 75% done, the same as the 5-year average. Spring wheat crop conditions were unchanged on last week at 70% good/excellent. Sep 14 CBOT Wheat closed at $5.30, down 2 1/4 cents; Sep 14 KCBT Wheat closed at $6.28, down 5 3/4 cents; Sep 14 MGEX Wheat closed at $6.23 1/4, down 7 cents.