Chicago Grains Closing Report - Monday

17/08/15 -- Soycomplex: Beans closed with small gains, with the market expecting a one point reduction in US good to excellent crop ratings after the close. They didn't get it, the USDA left G/E ratings unchanged on a week ago at 63%. The worst ratings are in Missouri at only 31% good to excellent. The best are in Minnesota at 80% G/E. They said that 79% of the crop is setting pods, up 10 points on last week and exactly in line with the 5-year average, with 93% of the crop blooming being 2 points behind the norm. Support came from the news that weekly export inspections came in at 375,763 MT, more than double last week's total and the highest since early April. Also friendly was news that the July NOPA crush was 145.2 million bushels, up from 142.4 million in June, and 21% higher than a year previously. A Bloomberg survey saw that only at at an average of 139.5 million bushels. The year-to-date NOPA crush is up 11% year-on-year. The first day of the Pro Farmer crop tour in Ohio found very variable yield potential in soybeans this year. Average pod counts in a 3 foot square plot were said to be 1,098.4, down from 1,342.42 in 2014. Things were a bit better in South Dakota where pod counts of 1,226 versus 1,058 a year earlier were reported. Sep 15 Soybeans closed at $9.27, up 1 3/4 cents; Nov 15 Soybeans closed at $9.17, up 1/2 cent; Sep 15 Soybean Meal closed at $325.40, up $0.20; Sep 15 Soybean Oil closed at 29.06, down 2 points.

Corn: The market closed slightly lower. As with beans the trade was expecting on average a one point cut in good to excellent crop ratings, unlike last week this time round the USDA concurred, paring back G/E to 69%. The worst ratings are in North Carolina (43% G/E), Ohio (46% G/E) and Indiana (48% G/E). The best conditions are 88% G/E in Minnesota. They said that 71% of the crop is at the dough stage, 5 points ahead of average, and that 21% of the crop is dented versus 28% on average at this time. Weekly export inspections were in line with expectations at 890,083 MT. The ProFarmer crop tour in South Dakota estimated average corn yields there at 154 bu/acre, up from 153 bu/acre a year ago. In Ohio however, corn yields only averaged 152.9 bu/acre, down from the 182.11 bu/acre measured in the same area a year earlier, said Bloomberg. The FSA reported the prevented planting corn area at 2.3 million acres, up from 1.54 million a year ago, but that number probably won't be factored into things until October. Taiwan purchased 23,000 MT of US corn in a tender. Ukraine said that it had exported 3.77 MMT of grains already this season, of which 1.12 MMT was corn. Russia said that it had exported only 159 TMT of corn so far this season, but it is expecting shipments to pick up once the 2015 harvest begins. Russia is forecasting a record 13.5 MMT corn crop this year. Sep 15 Corn closed at $3.63 1/4, down 3/4 cent; Dec 15 Corn closed at $3.74 1/2, down 1 cent.

Wheat: The market closed around 5-7 cents lower. World production potential appears to be getting larger, with IKAR today raising their view on the Russian wheat crop to 61 MMT this year, now beating last season's production. France will now have finished harvesting what is expected to now be a record wheat crop. Ukraine's 2015 wheat crop has also come in above early season expectations. All three are of course aggressive competitors with US wheat on the export front. The USDA reported weekly export inspections of 560,083 MT today, which was pretty decent by recent standards and up by a third on a week ago. Year to date inspections are still down more than 20% from a year ago though. The USDA estimated the 2015 US spring wheat harvest at 53% complete, up from 28% done a week ago and well ahead of only 31% on average at this time. Crop ratings were up one point to 70% good to excellent, which is 2 points ahead of this time last year. Bangladesh tendered for 50,000 MT of wheat for shipment between August and October. India cut their figure for this year's wheat harvest from 90.78 MMT to 88.94 MMT. Ukraine said that they'd exported 1.44 MMT of wheat already this season. Russia said that their wheat shipments so far totalled 1.66 MMT, down sharply from 3.67 MMT a year previously. The current Russian export duty on wheat linked to the value of the weak rouble is probably the reason that exports are down so much. Sep 15 CBOT Wheat closed at $5.00 1/2, down 6 cents; Sep 15 KCBT Wheat closed at $4.82 1/4, down 7 1/2 cents; Sep 15 MGEX Wheat closed at $5.13, down 5 1/2 cents.