Soybeans Decline to Six-Week Low on South America Outlook

Soybean futures fell to a six-week low on speculation that rain will boost yields in South America, reducing demand for supplies from the U.S. Wheat dropped, while corn gained.

In parts of Argentina, precipitation overnight reduced soil-moisture deficits, and more rain is expected in the six- to 15-day period, Commodity Weather Group LLC in Bethesda, Maryland, said today in a report. In central and southern Brazil, scattered rain fell in the past two days, and more was forecast in the next two weeks.

“Stabilizing crop conditions in Argentina and nearly ideal conditions in Brazil should keep soybeans under pressure,” Jim Gerlach, the president of A/C Trading Co. in Fowler, Indiana, said in a telephone interview. “The pod-filling period happens in mid-February through mid-March in Argentina, and in Brazil from early February to early March.”

Soybean futures for March delivery fell 1.2 percent to $12.765 a bushel at 10:01 a.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. Earlier, the price touched $12.76, the lowest for a most-active contract since Nov. 21. The oilseed dropped 8.3 percent last year.

Combined production by Brazil and Argentina, which begin harvesting in this month, may rise 8.5 percent to a record 142.5 million metric tons, the USDA said on Dec 10.

Brazil is the world’s biggest exporter and Argentina is the top shipper of soy-based animal feed and cooking oil.

Corn futures for March delivery gained 0.7 percent to $4.25 a bushel. The price tumbled 40 percent last year as U.S. production jumped 30 percent to a record.

Wheat futures for March delivery dropped 0.8 percent to $6.005 a bushel. On Dec. 31, the grain touched $5.99, the lowest since May 15, 2012.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jeff Wilson in Chicago at jwilson29@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Patrick McKiernan at pmckiernan@bloomberg.net

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