Soybeans Jump to Five-Month High on Rising Demand for U.S. Crop

Feb 25, 2014 4:19 pm ET

Feb. 25 (Bloomberg) -- Soybean futures extended this year’s rally, reaching the highest price since September, after a government report showed increased overseas demand for supplies from the U.S., the second-biggest exporter. Corn and wheat rose.

Exporters sold 568,000 metric tons of soybeans to unknown buyers for delivery by Aug. 31, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a statement today. Sales through Feb. 13 were already 5.1 percent above the USDA’s forecast for the year. Output in Brazil, the biggest exporter, will be 5 percent less than previously forecast after dry weather damaged yields, Hamburg-based researcher Oil World said in a report.

“This means bean exports are up another notch,” Roy Huckabay, executive vice president at the Linn Group in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. As demand from overseas rises, the U.S. will import soybeans and soybean meal and do “everything we can to stretch out our beans,” he said.

Soybean futures for May delivery gained 0.9 percent to close at $13.8725 a bushel at 1:15 p.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade, capping a four-day gain of 3.4 percent. Earlier, the oilseed touched $13.885, the highest for a most-active contract since Sept. 13.

Soybean-meal futures for May delivery gained 1.1 percent on the CBOT to $453.70 for 2,000 pounds of the animal feed, after touching $455, the highest since June 11.

Corn Rally

Corn futures for May delivery climbed 0.8 percent to $4.6125 a bushel in Chicago, the first gain in three sessions. Prices have climbed 6.3 percent this month, heading for the first two-month gain since July 2012, as demand improved for the grain from overseas buyers and domestic ethanol producers.

Wheat futures for May delivery rose 0.2 percent to close at $6.18 a bushel. The grain touched $6.20, the highest for a most- active contract since Dec. 19.

Prices have risen 11 percent this month on concerns that U.S. crops have been damaged by cold, dry weather.

Oat futures for May delivery jumped 4.5 percent to $4.6825 a bushel, the highest since July 2008. The most-active contract has climbed 32 percent this year as a rail backlog slows supplies from Canada, the world’s biggest exporter.

--Editors: Joe Richter, Steve Stroth