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CME: Corn Futures Closed Lower Friday

05 March 2012

US - May Corn finished down 4 at 654, 4 off the high and 3 1/2 up from the low. July Corn closed down 5 at 655 1/2. This was 2 1/4 up from the low and 5 off the high.

May corn closed 1 cent higher on the session and managed to gain 11 cents for the week.

Weakness in outside markets plus a long liquidation trend from old crop/new crop spreaders helped to pressure the market early Friday with May down as much as 7 cents on the day early but the market bounced to trade just slightly lower on the day into the mid-session.

Strength in wheat and soybeans late in the session helped pull the market to the highs of the day into the close. The market also found support from a jump in March corn which saw the highest close since early January.

The strong US dollar and weakness in energy and equity markets helped to pressure early. Talk that crop insurance guarantees for 2012 could encourage producers to plant more corn and less soybeans was also seen as a negative force.

March Rice finished down 0.215 at 14.245, 0.195 off the high and 0.055 up from the low.

Wheat Futures Closed Lower

May Wheat finished down 4 at 664, 8 1/2 off the high and 5 1/4 up from the low. July Wheat closed down 4 1/2 at 676. This was 3 3/4 up from the low and 9 off the high.

May wheat closed 10 1/2 cents higher on the session and managed to see a late rally to push to the highest level since February 8th. The late buying helped drive the market up 33 1/4 cents on the week.

The weak US dollar and a negative tilt to supply news helped to spark the early selling to push the market to a new 3-day low but buyers emerged to support a strong rally and higher trade on the day into the mid-session.

Once again, traders said that short-covering appears to be the positive force for the sessions as fund traders move out of shorts ahead of the weekend.

The market was back up to the highs late in the day and there is still talk of cold weather damage in Europe. Morocco is expected to import 1.0-1.1 million tonnes of soft wheat during the March to May time frame.

The government has suspended import duties on the commodity for two months. Continued talk of yesterday's sale of 120,000 tonnes of US wheat to Iran added to the positive tone. March Oats closed down 5 1/4 at 309 1/4. This was 5 3/4 up from the low and 5 3/4 off the high.

Soybean Futures Closed Higher

May Soybeans finished up 2 1/2 at 1322 1/2, 1 1/4 off the high and 16 1/4 up from the low. July Soybeans closed up 1 3/4 at 1329 1/2. This was 15 3/4 up from the low and 1 1/2 off the high. May Soymeal closed up 2.6 at 355.5. This was 6.9 up from the low and 0.2 off the high.

May Soybean Oil finished down 0.2 at 54.27, 0.25 off the high and 0.2 up from the low. May soybeans have closed higher in 14 of the past 15 trading sessions and managed to gain 46 1/4 cents for the week.

The early weakness stemmed from some spec selling with talk of the overbought condition of the market, a strong US dollar and weakness in energy and metal markets helping to pressure.

The US dollar surge did not seem to slow the buying from fund traders and the market found some late support from higher trade in wheat and strength in meal which pushed the market to a new high for the day.

News of more export business and some shipping concerns from Argentina may have helped to support more active buying from speculators and a rally into the mid-session which drove the market to the highest level since September 22nd.

Talk that crop insurance guarantees for 2012 could encourage producers to plant more corn and less soybeans was also seen as a positive force. A strike by port workers in Argentina's export hub has delayed at least 57 grain ships according to a coast guard official.

Private exporters reported to the USDA that 285,000 tonnes of US soybeans were sold to unknown destination. Of the total, 120,000 tonnes were for old crop and 165,000 tonnes were for new crop.


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