Russia temperatures 'may hurt winter wheat crops'
Beans closed around 12 cents higher on renewed concerns over Argentine heat and dryness. Abiove estimated Brazil’s 2013/14 soybean crop at 87.6 MMT, up from a previous estimate of 86.6 MMT, but below the forecasts from the likes of CONAB (90.33 MMT) and the USDA (89 MMT). They now see Brazil's 2013/14 soybean exports at 44.5 MMT versus a previous estimate of 44.0 MMT. Agroconsult estimated Brazil soybean crop at 91.6 MMT versus a previous estimate of 90.7 MMT.
Chinese industry analysts estimated the country's Jan soybean imports at 5.39 MMT, falling to 4.5 MMT in February. Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations begin at the end of the month, which normally keeps the first half of February quiet. China's March bean imports are forecast at 4.9 MMT, rising further to 5.2 MMT in April. Tomorrow brings the NOPA crush numbers for December, followed by weekly export sales on Thursday. Friday could see some consolidation and taking of money off the table as there's a long weekend in the US coming up with the markets closed on Monday for Martin Luther King Day. Jan 14 Soybeans closed at $13.39, up 12 1/4 cents; Mar 14 Soybeans closed at $13.06 1/2, up 12 1/4 cents; Jan 14 Soybean Meal closed at $445.10, down $1.80; Jan 14 Soybean Oil closed at 37.40, down 17 points.
The corn market closed around a couple of cents lower, despite talk that heat and dryness in Argentina was hurting newly planted corn there. Reports that China was continuing to reject US DDGs found to contain traces of the non-approved MIR 162 variety was unsettling. Agroconsult estimated Brazil’s 2013/14 corn crop at 76.2 MMT versus a previous estimate of 76.1 MMT and far higher than the USDA's 70 MMT forecast from Friday night.
Dr Cordonnier estimated the Brazilian corn crop at 68.5 MMT, unchanged from his previous estimate. He cut his Argentine corn production forecast by 0.5 MMT to 22.5 MMT. Fund selling was estimated at a net 5,000 corn contracts on the day. Tomorrow brings the regular weekly ethanol production and stocks numbers from the Energy Dept. Last week's US ethanol grind was 919,000 barrels/day. South Korea's NOFI are tendering for 140,000 MT of corn and 70,000 MT of feed wheat for May shipment. Both are optional origin. The Ukraine Ag Ministry increased their 2013/14 grain export forecast to a record 33 MMT, the bulk of which will be corn. Mar 14 Corn closed at $4.32, down 2 1/2 cents; May 14 Corn closed at $4.40, down 2 1/2 cents.
The wheat market closed higher on all three exchanges, with Kansas wheat displaying the most firmness. Most of Kansas and Nebraska are seen unusually dry. Argentina approved 1.5 MMT of wheat for export starting with an immediate shipment of 500 TMT, prompting some to suggest that Brazilian millers may cancel US HRW wheat purchases to buy from Argentina instead. India's PEC tendered to sell a further 100 TMT of wheat for Feb/Mar shipment.
There's still talk that suddenly much colder temperatures in Russia and Ukraine might hurt winter wheat crops there unprotected by snow. "Moscow will dip below 20 degrees by Thursday and may see minimum temperatures of 1-10 by the weekend with very limited chances for snowfall. A damaging weather forecast for Black Sea and European crops remains the most threatening thing in the market for the bear camp," one commentator said. The fact that Egypt bought US SRW wheat over the weekend for the first time in almost 12 months, even if it was just one cargo, is supportive. Mar 14 CBOT Wheat closed at $5.79 1/2, up 6 cents; Mar 14 KCBT Wheat closed at $6.32, up 12 1/4 cents; Mar 14 MGEX Wheat closed at $6.19 1/2, up 1 3/4 cents.
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