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U.S. grains: Wheat ends week down 3.6 per cent

Chicago | Reuters — U.S. corn and wheat futures firmed on Friday on bargain-buying a day after falling to multi-month lows, but both grains posted weekly declines reflecting swelling global supplies.

Soybeans ended modestly lower after a choppy session.

Chicago Board of Trade March wheat settled up 8-3/4 cents at $4.04-1/4 per bushel and March corn ended up 4-3/4 cents at $3.47-1/4 a bushel (all figures US$).

January soybeans finished down 2-1/4 cents at $10.27-1/2 a bushel.

Wheat posted the biggest daily move as the market bounced from contract lows set a day earlier. For the week, however, March wheat fell 3.6 per cent, its biggest weekly decline since late August.

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Expectations of record wheat production in Australia, the world’s fourth-largest exporter, have renewed pressure on futures prices following ample supplies from the Northern Hemisphere earlier this year.

Estimates pointing to a big Canadian harvest, despite weather-disrupted field work, also reinforced the prospect of hefty global inventories.

“The high Canadian wheat crop will add to the existing oversupply generated by record crops that have been achieved or are expected in Russia and Australia respectively,” Commerzbank analysts said in a market note.

Corn followed wheat’s lead and rallied on Friday but still fell about three per cent for the week.

Soybeans traded higher at times but closed lower and notched a weekly decline of 1.8 per cent, pulled down by generally favourable crop weather as the South American soy crop develops.

“Demand remains robust for soybeans, necessitating a big South American crop, but thus far that’s exactly what we are on track to get,” INTL FCStone chief commodities economist Arlan Suderman said in a note to clients.

— Julie Ingwersen is a Reuters correspondent covering grain markets from Chicago. Additional reporting for Reuters by Naveen Thukral in Singapore and Gus Trompiz in Paris.

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