U.S. grains: Technical selling pushes wheat, corn, soy lower

CBOT December 2019 wheat with 20-, 50- and 100-day moving averages. (Barchart)

Chicago | Reuters — U.S. corn, soybean and wheat futures fell on Wednesday on a round of technical selling after posting sharp gains earlier this week, traders said.

Wheat fell most, with the benchmark Chicago Board of Trade December soft red winter wheat contract sinking 2.1 per cent, its biggest daily loss since Aug. 30.

Wheat, which faced some fundamental pressure from fresh signs of weak export demand for U.S. supplies, had risen for four sessions in a row.

The losses in corn and soybeans were limited by continuing support from the U.S. Agriculture Department’s quarterly stocks report on Monday that showed domestic supplies were tighter than expected.

“I think it’s kind of a technical back-up,” Bill Gentry, managing director of agriculture consulting for Risk Management Commodities said of Wednesday’s moves.

“I don’t see a five-cent pull-back as a major move after what we have seen in the last couple of days.”

CBOT December soft red winter wheat settled down 9-3/4 cents at $4.89 a bushel (all figures US$).

Egypt’s state grains buyer, the General Authority for Supply Commodities, said on Wednesday it bought 60,000 tonnes of French wheat in a tender for shipment Nov. 5-15.

“Unfortunately it looks like the Black Sea region and Europe will continue to dominate such tenders with U.S. wheat not seen with much of a chance,” one trader said.

Analyst were expecting a USDA report on Thursday morning to show weekly wheat export sales in a range from 200,000 tonnes to 600,000 tonnes compared to 283,156 tonnes a week ago.

CBOT December corn futures ended off 4-3/4 cents at $3.87-3/4 a bushel.

“Soybeans, corn and wheat markets are all seeing a pullback today with some profit taking and repositioning after their strong rises this week,” said Matt Ammermann, commodity risk manager at INTL FCStone. “The dollar remains in a strong trend around two-year highs, which is a burden for U.S. exports.”

INTL FCStone’s forecast for this year’s U.S. corn harvest added to the bearish tone. The firm on Tuesday raised its estimate of the average U.S. 2019 corn yield to 169.3 bushels per acre, from 168.4 in its previous monthly report.

CBOT November soybean futures were down 5-3/4 cents at $9.13-3/4 a bushel.

Private exporters sold 464,000 tonnes of U.S. soybeans to China for shipment in the 2019-20 marketing year, USDA said on Wednesday, the latest in a flurry of purchases by the world’s top soy importer.

— Mark Weinraub is a Reuters commodities correspondent in Chicago; additional reporting by Michael Hogan in Hamburg and Colin Packham in Sydney.



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