Wheat futures rose for the fourth time in five sessions on speculation that wet weather will curtail production in Russia and Ukraine, boosting demand for U.S. supplies. Corn also climbed, while soybeans fell.
Russia may plant 13 million hectares of grain for harvest next year, down from 16 million expected earlier, Nikolai Fedorov, the agriculture minister said at a news conference today. Ukraine winter-wheat planting may be 30 percent less than targeted after record rainfall, the national weather center in Kiev said Sept. 27.
“The drop in planted area in Russia and Ukraine will continue to provide support for the market,” Shawn McCambridge, the senior grain analyst for Jefferies Bache LLC in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. “A further rally in prices may begin to slow demand.”
Wheat futures for delivery in December increased 0.9 percent to $6.9325 a bushel at 10:11 a.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. Last week, the grain rose 0.6 percent, the third straight gain and the longest rally in a year, after the government said U.S. inventories on Sept. 1 fell to the lowest in six years.
Corn futures for delivery in December added 0.7 percent to $4.465 a bushel in Chicago, heading for a third straight gain.
Soybean futures for delivery in November slipped 0.2 percent to $12.93 a bushel on the CBOT, after rising as much as 0.8 percent.
Informa Economics Inc. in Memphis, Tennessee, cut its soybean harvest forecast last week by 1.5 percent to 3.176 billion bushels, partly as crop conditions fell. Analysts in a Bloomberg survey predicted 3.161 billion, more than the USDA’s estimate last month of 3.149 billion.
The USDA’s scheduled update of estimates on Oct. 11 may be delayed by the federal government’s partial shutdown that began Oct. 1.
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