Chicago Markets End Firmer, Helped By Improved Exports

07/03/16 -- Soycomplex: Beans closed with small gains helped by positive weekly export data. The USDA reported weekly soybean export inspections of 1.067 MM, up 70.5% from the same week a year ago. YTD inspections are now only 7% behind last year's record pace. The USDA currently predicts these falling more than 8% for the 2015/16 season. Talk of a possible Brazilian trucker strike next week leans a bit friendly too. Even if fund money has cut the size of it's short position, they were still net short nearly 70k lots as of last Tuesday night. A suddenly firmer Brazilian real also lends a bit of support to beans following the news that the Brazilian authorities had detained former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on links to corruption. Mar 16 Soybeans settled at $8.70 1/2, up 14 1/2 cents; May 16 Soybeans settled at $8.78 1/2, up 14 3/4 cents; May 16 Soybean Meal settled at $270.90, up $0.60; May 16 Soybean Oil settled at 30.96, up 35 points.

Corn: The corn market closed a bit firmer, helped by outside markets like crude hitting its best levels of 2016 so far. Weekly export inspections were in line with trade estimates at 953,062 MT and showed a 29% improvement on last week. YTD inspections are still down 20.5% on last year though. The USDA sees them declining only 10.2% for the full season. Friday's Commitment of Traders report shows fund money sitting on a net short position in Chicago corn of over 206k contracts, keeping them a bit jittery. Ukraine seaports were reported to have exported over 580,000 MT of corn last week, and Russia chipped in with a further 110,00 MT. New crop corn planting is now underway for the US 2016 harvest! Corn planting was 5% complete in Texas as of Sunday night. The firmer Brazilian real may start to knock there corn exports, which have been running at record levels of late, US offers are said to be competitive with those out of Brazil and Argentina right now. Mar 16 Corn settled at $3.55, up 1/2 cent; May 16 Corn settled at $3.59, up 3/4 cent.

Wheat: The wheat market closed with small gains, but off earlier highs. Weekly export inspections of 443,190 MT were a bit better than of late, being up 18% on a week ago. YTD inspections are still 12.3% behind last year though versus a USDA forecast for a full season decline of only 5.5%. Given that the US 2015/16 season finishes at the end of May there isn't a great deal of time left to make up that lost ground. Still, a weaker tone to the dollar this week might help. Dryness concerns on the Southern and western Plains keep getting a mention. With fund money short of 113k lots of SRW wheat as of last Tuesday they might be more concerned about this than you or I. That's the equivalent of over 15 MMT. Again, when fund money is sitting on a short like that, short-covering can be triggered for little apparent reason. US weather will start to play an important role now. EU wheat thus far looks to have escaped with a mild winter. Russian prospects are being upgraded, and winter-kill fears down-sized. May 16 CBOT Wheat settled at $4.62 3/4, up 2 cents; May 16 KCBT Wheat settled at $4.70 3/4, up 2 cents; May 16 MGEX Wheat settled at $5.00 3/4, up 3 cents.