U.S. grains: Soybeans rally on record exports, big U.S. crush

Chicago | Reuters — U.S. soybeans jumped one per cent on Monday, rebounding from an earlier one-week low after government and private reports showed larger-than-expected demand from exporters and crushers.

Wheat and corn futures each fell more than one per cent at the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT), pressured by disappointing international demand for U.S. grain.

The U.S. Agriculture Department said a record 3.1 million tonnes of soybeans were inspected for export last week, above the high end of analysts’ expectations . The U.S. National Oilseed Processors Association, in a report issued an hour later, said crushers in the United States had processed 157.96 million bushels of soybeans in October, a record for the month and above analysts’ guesses.

The separate reports confirmed record soy demand for a record-large U.S. harvest, offsetting pressure from chatter of soymeal imports in the southeastern U.S. and a bird flu outbreak at farms in England and the Netherlands. Culling of infected birds would reduce demand for animal feed such as soymeal.

“With the NOPA number and export inspections, we put on notice the (soybean) demand bear that we are not rationing demand,” said Global Commodities Analytics analyst Mike Zuzolo. “That’s overriding the potential of imports and the avian bird flu.”

CBOT January soybeans turned higher just before the NOPA report and extended gains after the release, finishing 13-3/4 cents higher at $10.36-1/4 per bushel (all figures US$).

CBOT December wheat eased 8-3/4 cents to $5.51-3/4, while December corn declined 4-1/4 cents to $3.77-1/2, with each contract further pressured by profit-taking after recent three-month highs.

USDA showed export inspections of corn at 401,116 tonnes and wheat at 139,351 tonnes, both below expectations. The lacklustre demand for the grains offset support from worries that bitter cold in the U.S. could damage young wheat plants. Wheat had its largest weekly gains in two years last week.

— Michael Hirtzer reports on crop commodity markets for Reuters from Chicago. Additional reporting for Reuters by Gus Trompiz in Paris and Naveen Thukral in Singapore.

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