Soybeans Rise on Signs Demand Remains Robust After Record High

Soybeans rose in Chicago for the first time this week on signs demand has yet to slow even after the worst U.S. drought in a half century lifted prices to a record last month. Corn and wheat gained.

U.S. processors crushed 137.4 million bushels of soybeans in July, up 2.4 percent from June, the National Oilseed Processors Association said yesterday. The amount of soybeans inspected for export surged 22 percent in the week ended Aug. 9, government data show. The oilseed is up 34 percent this year as dry weather left U.S. crops in the worst shape since 1988, after drought slashed supplies in South America last season.

“We maintain a bullish outlook for soybeans,” Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. analysts including Paul Deane wrote today in an e-mailed report. “The market needs to ration a record amount of supply before the next South American crop.”

Soybeans for November delivery rose 0.8 percent to $16.105 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade by 12:54 p.m. London time. Prices fell 2.8 percent in the previous two days and are down 4.8 percent since reaching a record $16.915 on July 23.

Areas of central Iowa and Illinois have chances of rain tomorrow before conditions turn drier, National Weather Service data show. Much of those states, the biggest U.S. corn and soybean growers, had less than half the normal amount of rain in the past 60 days.

Corn Advances

Corn for December delivery rose 0.6 percent to $7.94 a bushel after sliding 4.2 percent in the previous three sessions. The grain touched a record $8.49 on Aug. 10 after the Department of Agriculture slashed its outlook for U.S. production to a six-year low.

China, the world’s largest corn grower after the U.S., cut its harvest estimate by about 500,000 metric tons after armyworms damaged crops, state-owned researcher China National Grain & Oils Information Center said today.

Wheat for December delivery gained 0.9 percent to $8.6575 a bushel after tumbling 7.4 percent in the past three sessions. In Paris, November-delivery milling wheat advanced 0.7 percent to 256.75 euros ($315.31) a ton on NYSE Liffe.

Egypt, the world’s largest wheat importer, bought 60,000 tons of Russian milling wheat at $313 a ton and an equal amount of Ukrainian grain at $313.88 a ton, the General Authority for Supply Commodities said yesterday. Algeria is seeking to buy 50,000 tons of soft wheat of optional origin, Paris-based farm adviser Agritel said yesterday.

In Russia, the world’s third-largest wheat exporter last season, drought affected about 5.6 million hectares (13.8 million acres) of land planted with grains and other crops, causing damage to agriculture that reached 36.5 billion rubles ($1.2 billion), the Agriculture Ministry said yesterday.

Importers tendered for wheat “as the market became concerned with rising grain prices and the lower export volume out of the Black Sea,” Eric Bailon, president of Manila-based Paritas Trading Corp., said in a report.

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