SINGAPORE: Chicago soybeans gained more ground on Tuesday, with prices underpinned by hot weather in top exporter Brazil which is likely to stress the newly planted crop despite some rains over the weekend.
Wheat rose, recouping some of the last session’s losses, although the improved condition of the US winter crop limited gains and corn edged lower.
“Brazil’s soybean planting is running well below last year’s pace,” said one Singapore-based trader. “High temperatures and lack of rains are threatening the crop.”
The most-active soybean contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) added 0.6% to $13.75-1/4 a bushel, as of 0310 GMT, having climbed more than 2% in the previous session.
Wheat rose 0.7% to $5.74-3/4 a bushel and corn lost 0.1% to $4.69-1/4 a bushel.
There was additional support for grains and oilseed prices stemming from a weaker dollar, which makes greenback-priced goods cheaper for buyers holding other currencies.
The dollar was on the defensive and trading by multi-month lows on the euro and a handful of other major currencies on Tuesday, as investors expect US interest rates to fall next year and see that as a signal to sell the dollar in anticipation.
Brazil’s 2023/24 soybean planting had reached 68% of the expected area, as of Thursday, agribusiness consultancy AgRural said on Monday, up 7 percentage points from the previous week.
Sowing continues to lag behind last year’s levels, when 80% of the areas had been planted at the same time, and the current pace was the slowest for the period since 2019/20, AgRural said in a statement.
Downpours on Sunday in Brazil provided partial relief to the top soybean exporting nation, where hot conditions have brutalized crops in northern and central growing areas.
But the rains were erratic, said Drew Lerner, president of World Weather.
China’s soybean imports from Brazil rose 71% in October from a year earlier, data showed on Monday, boosted by cheaper prices following a bumper crop in the South American nation.
China imported 4.81 million metric tons of the oilseed from Brazil last month, according to the General Administration of Customs.
For wheat, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) on Monday rated 48% of the US winter wheat crop in good-to-excellent condition, up one percentage point from last week and the highest for this time of year since 2019.
Meanwhile, the US corn harvest is nearly finished, with 93% completed by Sunday, below the average analyst estimate of 94% but ahead of the five-year average pace of 91%.
The USDA did not expect any further updates on soybean progress after reporting that 95% of the oilseed crop was harvested by Nov. 12.
Commodity funds were net buyers of CBOT soybean, soymeal, soyoil and corn futures contracts on Monday, traders said. Funds were net sellers of wheat futures, they added.