Reuters — U.S. corn and soybean futures rose on Wednesday in a light bounce after setting multiyear lows a day earlier, but farmer selling and expectations of near-record U.S. harvests limited gains.
Wheat firmed in a light short-covering bounce after setting four-year lows in the last week.
At the Chicago Board of Trade, September corn settled up 4-1/4 cents at $3.78-1/4 per bushel. August soybeans ended up 6-3/4 cents at $11.87-1/4 a bushel. September wheat ended up 1/4 cent at $5.38 a bushel.
Corn and soybeans rose in early trade on expectations that sliding prices for both commodities had attracted end-user buying. Front-month corn on Tuesday fell to $3.71 a bushel, its lowest level since July 2010, and soybeans hit $11.53-1/4, their lowest since January 2012.
The markets roared to session highs on Wednesday after the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirmed export sales of corn and soybeans to unknown destinations for delivery in 2014-15, along with sales of 120,000 tonnes of soybeans to China for the 2013-14 marketing year that ends Aug. 31.
But traders scaled back gains as forecasts for ideal weather in the U.S. Midwest reinforced expectations of big crops.
“Weather conditions across the Corn Belt remain near perfect as we begin the reproductive stage of crop development. This is giving us chances of larger-than-trend yields in many areas,” Karl Setzer, market analyst with the MaxYield Cooperative in West Bend, Iowa, wrote in a research note to clients.
Some analysts said the impact of the old-crop soy sale was muted by USDA last week raising its forecast of U.S. 2013-14 ending stocks to 140 million bushels, up from 125 million a month earlier and above trade expectations.
The rally was also capped by producers who took advantage of the bounce by selling stored grain.
“The farmer has grain to sell, so on any rallies, I think he’s a seller,” said Dan Cekander, analyst with Newedge USA in Chicago.
CBOT corn is down 10.8 percent so far this month and soybeans are down 15 percent, on pace for their biggest monthly fall in three years.
CBOT wheat firmed but K.C. hard red winter wheat futures fell on talk of improving yields as the harvest of hard red winter wheat moves northward into Nebraska.