Soybeans advanced, rising for the second week, on speculation that smaller South American harvests will spur demand for U.S. inventories. Corn gained.
Brazil’s soybean crop may fall to 66 million metric tons, below the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s official forecast of 68.5 million and 75.5 million harvested last year, the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service said in a report yesterday. In the week ending March 29, U.S. exporters sold 1.11 million tons of soybeans, up 88 percent from a week earlier, USDA data show.
“The market is still adjusting to shrinking crops in Brazil,” Jim Gerlach, the president of A/C Trading Co. in Fowler, Indiana, said in a telephone interview. “Export sales show a global shift to buying more U.S. soybeans.”
Soybean futures for May delivery rose 1 percent to close at $14.34 a bushel at 1:15 p.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. The oilseed advanced 2.2 percent this week. Earlier, the price matched the April 3 peak at $14.3425, the highest for a most- active contract since Sept. 7. The commodity has gained 19 percent this year after hot, dry weather cut yields in Brazil and Argentina, the world’s biggest growers after the U.S.
Corn futures for May delivery climbed 0.2 percent to $6.5825 a bushel in Chicago. The prices increased 2.2 percent this week, snapping a two-week decline. The CBOT will be closed tomorrow for a public holiday.
The U.S. was the biggest exporter of both crops in the year that ended Aug. 31. Corn is the largest, valued at $76.5 billion in 2011, followed by soybeans at $35.8 billion, government figures show.
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