Chicago wheat and corn futures fell on Tuesday after a weekly report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) gave an overall positive picture of U.S. crop conditions and harvest progress.
Dealers were awaiting the USDA’s closely-watched estimates of U.S. planted area for the new crop and quarterly grain stocks later on Tuesday.
Chicago Board of Trade most active wheat was down 0.8% at $4.82-1/4 a bushel at 1041 GMT. Corn fell 0.3% to $3.27-1/2 a bushel, while soybeans eased 0.03% to $8.61-1/4 a bushel.
After Monday’s close, the USDA’s weekly U.S. crop report said 41% of U.S. winter wheat was harvested, a jump from 29% last week. Some 52% of U.S. winter wheat was in good-to-excellent condition, matching analyst forecasts.
“The USDA’s crop conditions report gave a decent picture of U.S. wheat, corn and soybeans, which is a weakening factor for prices today,” said Matt Ammermann, commodity risk manager with INTL FCStone. “U.S. crop weather is overall not giving cause for concern.”
“The winter wheat harvest is gathering speed and is looking just fine now. World wheat markets are looking pretty well supplied with new crops on the way in the Black Sea region and the Baltic.”
About 73% of U.S. corn was in good-to-excellent condition, a level also expected by analysts, and up from 72% last week.
Around 71% of U.S. soybeans are in a good-to-excellent state, against 70% last week.
The USDA will issue U.S. planted acreage and quarterly grain stocks reports 1600 GMT on Tuesday. Analysts expect to see a modest shift in U.S. plantings from corn to soybeans.
“The market is not expecting major changes in the USDA’s acreage estimates for U.S. new crop sowings later today," Ammermann said. "But the USDA can give surprises, so there is some risk-avoidance before the announcements later.”
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