CHICAGO, July 2 (Reuters) – U.S. corn futures surged to a
9-1/2-month peak o n M onday as a worsening drought in the U.S.
Midwest severely stressed crops while they pollinate, a critical
stage of development when high heat and a lack of rain can slash
Soybeans climbed to the highest point in nearly four years
on a continuous chart, propelled by strong export demand and
crop-stressing U.S. weather.
Wheat jumped to a 10-month high, buoyed by its own
tightening supply balance with the outlook for crops in regions
such as the Black Sea diminishing, while the surge in corn could
lead to increased volumes of wheat being used for animal feed.
Grains markets remained focused on a deepening drought
across much of the U.S. Corn Belt.
Storms over the weekend brought light and isolated rain to
parts of the Midwest, but the much-needed precipitation missed a
large portion of the region. Temperatures were forecast to
remain in the 90s to low-100s Fahrenheit for most of this week.
“The weekend rains were a little disappointing. It looks
like the heat’s going to stick around for another four or five
days,” said Alan Kluis, president of Kluis Commodities.
“With rain in August, the soybeans can still come back, but
the dryness in corn during pollination can do irreversible
damage,” he said.
New-crop December corn on the Chicago Board of Trade
rose 23 cents, or 3.6 percent, to $6.57-3/4 a bushel by 9:02
a.m. CDT (1402 GMT), the highest for that contract since
New-crop November CBOT soybeans rose 19 cents, or 1.3
percent, to $14.46-3/4 a bushel after setting a contract high of
$14.55-3/4. The lightly traded front-month contract peaked
at $15.42, the highest for a spot contract since July 2008.
Cropcast, a division of MDA EarthSat Weather, on Monday told
the Reuters Global Ags Forum it had cut its 2012 U.S. corn yield
forecast by three bushels per acre to 150.6 bpa and trimmed its
soybean yield view to 40 bpa, down 0.6 bushel, due to a hot and
dry weather outlook.
The company, which specializes in agricultural weather
forecasting, joined several other private forecasters that have
slashed their crop projections in recent days, including Informa
Economics and investment bank Goldman Sachs
Soybean prices received an added boost from confirmation of
a 1.19-million-tonne private exporter sale to unknown
destinations, announced by the U.S. Agriculture Department.
June 30 (Reuters) – Wal-Mart Stores Inc has
suspended one of its seafood suppliers amid allegations that the
company, CJ’s Seafood of Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, violated
several federal labor laws.
The retailing giant launched an investigation of CJ’s
Seafood following a report published by labor rights group the
Worker Rights Consortium that said the crawfish processor abused
migrant workers, forced them to work 24 hour shifts and used
threats to prevent them from complaining to authorities.
CHICAGO, June 13 (Reuters) – The scramble for scarce stocks
of U.S. corn heated up on Wednesday, as exporters at the Gulf
Coast bought corn barges at the highest price in a month,
suggesting renewed competition for domestic users whose basis
bids were already near record-high levels.
The move may mean the end for a two-tiered market that had
developed over the past month as basis bids in the export market
eased amid slow overseas demand while red-hot domestic demand,
particularly from the ethanol sector, lifted interior bids.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – U.S. corn futures rallied to a two-week high on Friday, posting their biggest weekly gain in more than a year as tight supplies and worries about crop-stressing weekend weather offset pressure from a firm dollar and weaker financial markets.
Wheat fell nearly 2 percent for the day as the same hot, dry weather that lifted corn was seen supporting a brisk harvest pace for the winter crop, but prices were higher on the week.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – Earlier this month, executives at Hong Kong-based commodity trader Noble Group (NOBG.SI: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) talked with a Kansas agricultural economist about their ambitions to join the biggest wave of industry consolidation in more than a decade.
The executives, who had already decided not to pursue a bid for major U.S. grain trader Gavilon, said they were “thinking about where (they) fit and what’s a good investment,” said Jay O’Neil, an agricultural economist for Kansas State University’s International Grains Program who also does consulting work.
By Karl Plume
(Reuters) – Major importers stepped up their purchases of U.S. beef last week despite the discovery of a case of mad cow disease in California, government data showed on Thursday.
Export sales of fresh, chilled or frozen muscle beef totaled 16,829 tonnes in the week ended April 26, up 8.8 percent from the previous week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – U.S. live cattle futures tumbled more than 2 percent on Tuesday for their biggest drop in seven months, hit by rumors of a new, domestic case of mad cow disease that later received government confirmation.
Funds liquidated their long positions amid fears that importers of U.S. beef will shut their doors just like they did in 2003, when the United States discovered its first case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy.
BEIJING/CHICAGO (Reuters) – China Grain Reserves Corp (Sinograin), which manages the state grain reserves, may have signed deals to import U.S. corn and it is ready boost purchases to replenish depleted reserves if the prices are attractive.
Sinograin’s interest comes after Chicago Board of Trade corn prices dropped to about $6 a bushel last week, the first time they have breached that level for about three months, but talk of China’s buying pushed up prices to a high of $6.28-1/2 per bushel on Friday.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – Oil markets rebounded from two days of losses on Wednesday as U.S. government data showed a steeper-than-expected drop in domestic fuel stocks, while gold dipped after a four-session rally and copper steadied near a three-month low.
Cotton climbed nearly 2 percent in a short-covering rally a day after the U.S. government forecast record-high global cotton stocks, and cocoa and coffee rose in reaction to a strong earthquake off Indonesia that triggered tsunami warnings in the world’s No. 3 coffee producer.
CHICAGO, April 3 (Reuters) – U.S. agribusiness Archer
Daniels Midland Co will continue to eye acquisitions of
smaller assets in North America to expand its reach in the
agricultural sector, while large acquisitions may be less
likely, a company executive said on Tuesday.
“Other than one-off deals, we can’t really grow too much in
North America,” said A. James Shafter, vice president of mergers
and acquisitions said on the sidelines of The State of
Agribusiness conference in Chicago.