Soybeans, corn, wheat up ahead of Labor Day weekend
Soybeans were higher on short covering and technical buying but closed with significant weekly losses. Contracts were oversold after the big drop on Thursday and export demand has been solid. However, longer-term sales a big question due to uncertainties about the economic health of and demand from China due to COVID lockdowns in some major cities. Most near-term forecasts have generally dry conditions in the Midwest and Plains, but for now, most analysts are expecting a big crop. Soybean meal was mostly higher on spread trade out of September into the deferred contracts, while bean oil was up on crude oil supply concerns. The trade is also monitoring conditions in South America ahead of widespread planting, which starts this month.
Corn was higher on short covering and technical buying, with the most active months managing a firm weekly finish. Corn is monitoring the weather ahead of widespread harvest. There was some rain in the forecast for Labor Day weekend, but the longer outlooks were generally drier, potentially trimming yield off of the later planted and later developed crop. Export demand remains slow with a lot of competition from Ukraine and Brazil. Corn harvest is reportedly underway in Ukraine. The State Customs Service says 2.6 million tons of corn were exported by Ukraine in July and August. France’s AgriMer says 45% of that nation’s corn crop is in good to excellent condition, 2% less than the previous week and well below a year ago due to drought.
The wheat complex was mixed with Chicago and Kansas City up and Minneapolis mostly firm, also closing the week out mixed. The dollar was down during the session, but remained near the 20-year high, making U.S. goods more expensive on the export market and further limiting demand. The spring wheat harvest is expected to see solid near-term progress, with good yield results in some areas. Ukraine’s Ministry of Ag Policy says 99% of the winter wheat crop has been harvested at 19.2 million tons, with temporary storage an issue following Russia’s invasion. Russia’s Ministry of Ag says the year-to-date wheat harvest is 86.9 million tons. Egypt reportedly bought 120,000 tons of wheat from Russia. In Argentina, wheat producers have an eye on expected September rainfall.