Chicago Grains Post Modest Gains

02/10/14 -- Soycomplex: Beans closed with relatively small gains. Weekly export sales were in line with expectations at 869.1 TMT for 2014/15 shipment and 21.5 TMT for 2015/16. A wetter weather outlook for the Midwest next week is seen slowing harvest activity in a market keen to secure front end supplies. There was also some talk of a freeze risk for some northern states over the weekend. Linn Group joined the throng of analysts predicting much larger crop numbers than the USDA said last month. They are projecting a 48.6 bu/acre US soybean yield this year and a 4.091 billion bushel crop Those figures are slightly above FCStone's 48.4 bu/acre and 4.066 billion bushels of yesterday. Informa are due to release their latest estimates tomorrow, with the USDA themselves not out until Friday week. Last month they lined up at 46.6 bu/acre and production of "only" 3.913 billion bushels - even if that was a record in its own right. Lanworth forecast the 2014/15 Argentine soybean crop at a new record 58.7 MMT. Brazil are also expected to chip in with an all time high crop of around 95 MMT or more next year. Stats Canada are out tomorrow with their Canadian crop production estimates. Trade ideas for canola production this year are around 14.5-14.6 MMT versus their previous forecast of 13.9 MMT. Nov 14 Soybeans closed at $9.24 1/2, up 7 3/4 cents; Jan 15 Soybeans closed at $9.33, up 8 cents; Oct 14 Soybean Meal closed at $308.70, up $3.40; Oct 14 Soybean Oil closed at 32.67, up 1 point.

Corn: The corn market posted small gains. MDA CropCast raised their estimate for the US 2014 corn crop by 79 million bushels to 14.505 billion, joining a group of forecasters around the 14.5-15.0 billion bushel mark. The USDA were 14.395 billion back in September with yields at 171.7 bu/acre. Linn Group today pegged the crop at 14.881 billion bushels, up from 14.671 billion in September. They raised their yield estimate to 176.9 bu/acre from 174.65 bu/acre last month. FCStone were at 14.958 billion and 178.4 bu/acre yesterday. Weekly US export sales came in at the low end of trade guesses of 650-900 TMT at 638 TMT for 2014/15 shipment, plus a further near 48 TMT for the 2015/16 marketing year. That's the lowest weekly total so far this season. Separately the USDA announced 174,000 MT of US corn sold to unknown for 2014/15 shipment under the daily reporting system. Russia said that they'd harvested 5.5 MMT of corn so far, with Ukraine saying that they'd cut 6.7 MMT to date. The Ukraine Ag Ministry insist that production will reach 30 MMT or more this year, although most private analysts think that this is optimistic and are lining up in the 25-27 MMT region. Production last year was a record 30.9 MMT. Nevertheless, a report on Reuters said that Ukraine corn prices could quickly fall to around $140/tonne FOB the Black Sea, around $20/tonne lower than where they are currently, and some $60/tonne below where they were 12 months ago. Dec 14 Corn closed at $3.22 3/4, up 1 1/2 cents; Mar 15 Corn closed at $3.35 3/4, up 1 3/4 cents.

Wheat: The wheat market closed around 3 to 4 cents higher across the three exchanges. Weekly export sales were supportive at 741 TMT versus expectations of only 400-600 TMT. Iran is said to have bought 400 TMT of EU origin wheat in the last week or so, as EU exports continue to virtually match last season's pace despite USDA expectations for a near 6 MMT decline year-on-year. It is interesting to note that this has been achieved in the face of very strong early season competition from Russia and Ukraine, something that is expected to wane as the season wears on. Taiwan bought 80,000 MT of US wheat for Nov–Dec shipment in a tender. South Korea's CJ bought 36,500 MT of Australian milling wheat for Feb-March shipment. The wheat harvest in South Australia state is said to be underway 2-3 weeks earlier than normal. Stats Canada are out tomorrow with their latest crop production estimates. A Reuters survey has the 2014 total Canadian wheat crop average estimate at 28.0 MMT versus Stats Canada's August estimate of 27.705 MMT. The 2014 Canadian barley crop average estimate is 7.3 MMT versus Stats Canada's August estimate of 7.164 MMT. Russia said that they'd now harvested 99 MMT of grains off 87.4% of the planned area, including 58.6 MMT of wheat. Winter wheat planting for the 2015 harvest in Russia is already approaching 75% done, and is running well ahead of year ago levels. Egypt's Supplies Minister said that state (GASC) wheat imports to fall to 4-4.5 MMT next year. Dec 14 CBOT Wheat closed at $4.82 3/4, up 3 3/4 cents; Dec 14 KCBT Wheat closed at $5.61 1/2, up 4 cents; Dec 14 MGEX Wheat closed at $5.35 1/2, up 3 3/4 cents.