Soybeans Fall as Rain Aids South American Crop; Wheat Declines

Dec 23, 2013 3:23 pm ET

Dec. 23 (Bloomberg) -- Soybeans fell from a one-week high on speculation that rain may aid crops in Brazil and Argentina, the world’s biggest growers after the U.S. Wheat also declined, while corn advanced for a third session.

Precipitation will return to southern Brazil by Dec. 27, after dry weather the past two weeks began to threaten yield potential, World Weather Inc. said in a report today. Rain and lower temperatures will ease soil-moisture deficits in parts of Argentina beginning Dec. 29, after temperatures rise near 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 Celsius) this week, the forecaster said.

“There is a better chance for rain in Argentina and southern Brazil later this week,” Brian Grete, the senior market analyst for Professional Farmers of America newsletter in Cedar Falls, Iowa, said in a telephone interview. “Crop conditions overall in Brazil are favorable for big crops.”

Soybean futures for delivery in March fell 0.8 percent to close at $13.1975 a bushel at 1:15 p.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade, after touching $13.3925, the highest for a most-active contract since Dec. 11.

Prices slumped 6.4 percent this year as the U.S. Department of Agriculture forecast global output will climb to a record 284.9 million metric tons in the 12 months ending May 30. Trading on the CBOT dropped 26 percent from the 100-day average for this time of day, before tomorrow’s early close ahead of the Dec. 25 Christmas holiday.

Wheat futures for March delivery declined 0.7 percent to $6.095 a bushel in Chicago, capping a seventh drop in eight sessions. The price touched a 19-month low at $6.0725 on Dec. 20, and trading was down 71 percent from the 100-day average.

Corn futures for delivery in March rose 0.2 percent to $4.3425 a bushel on the CBOT. The grain dropped 38 percent in 2013, as the USDA estimated domestic output jumped 30 percent this year to a record.

--With assistance from Phoebe Sedgman in Melbourne and Rudy Ruitenberg in Paris. Editors: Millie Munshi, Patrick McKiernan