Soybean futures fell for the first time in three days on speculation that an accelerating harvest in South America will leave ample global supplies. Corn and wheat rose.
Celeres, an Uberlandia, Brazil-based research company, said the soybean harvest was 28 percent complete as of Feb. 25. Output may reach a record 83.5 million metric tons as the country overtakes the U.S. as the world’s biggest exporter, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has said.
“Harvest is marching along quickly, and that means more supplies will be reaching the world markets,” Mark Schultz, the chief analyst for Northstar Commodity Investment Co. in Minneapolis, said in a telephone interview.
Soybean futures for May delivery fell 0.6 percent to close at $14.435 a bushel at 2 p.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. The price, down less than 0.1 percent this week, has dropped 9.8 percent since the end of September.
The number of ships scheduled to load soybeans at ports in Brazil rose to 136 today from 116 a week earlier, according to research companies SA Commodities and Unimar Agenciamentos Maritimos.
“Shipping delays are less important because capacity to load ships is better than it was a few years ago,” Shultz said.
Increasing vegetable-oil supplies in China will curb demand for soybean imports, said Dale Durchholz, the senior market analyst for AgriVisor LLC in Bloomington, Illinois.
Palm-oil inventories rose 130,000 tons to a record 1.22 million, Grain.gov.cn, a Chinese state-owned research company, said today.
Wheat futures for May delivery rose 0.8 percent to $7.205 a bushel in Chicago. This week, the price climbed 0.2 percent, snapping a six-week slump.
Corn futures for May delivery advanced 0.7 percent to $7.085 a bushel, the fifth straight gain. This week, the price climbed 3.5 percent, the most since mid-January.
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