Soybeans Rise as South America Planting Delays May Drain Stocks

Soybeans rose in Chicago on concern planting delays in Argentina and Brazil will push back the arrival of new-crop supplies from South America, keeping consumers dependent on shrinking U.S. stocks for longer.

Argentina is expected to get moderate to heavy storms in the next two days, delaying soybean and corn planting, Telvent DTN forecast yesterday. U.S. exporters sold 290,000 metric tons of soybeans to China for delivery in the 2012-13 marketing year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported yesterday.

“Chinese buyers have stepped up orders from the U.S. after crushing margins improved,” Arnaud Saulais, a broker at Starsupply Commodity Brokers in Nyon, Switzerland, wrote in an e-mailed report. “The market may remain strong today on high Chinese demand and we doubt that U.S. supplies will be enough to cover their needs before the South American crop is available.”

Soybeans for January delivery rose as much as 0.6 percent to $14.555 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade and were at $14.545 a bushel by 11:27 a.m. London time. Prices reached $14.5675 yesterday, the most expensive since Nov. 9.

Futures surged to a record $17.89 in September after the worst U.S. drought in a half century parched crops, increasing reliance on South American supplies.

“Brazil’s got to have a pretty much perfect season and the logistics need to work well enough to get the beans out,” said Victor Thianpiriya, an analyst at Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. in Singapore. “Stocks in the U.S., which is currently the global supplier, are going to be extremely tight come March.”

Dry Weather

Dry weather delayed soybean planting in the north of Brazil’s Mato Grosso state, Soybean & Corn Advisor Inc. reported last week.

Argentina has sown 37 percent of its soybeans, from 47 percent in 2011, the Buenos Aires Cereals Exchange said Nov. 22. In Brazil, 74 percent of the soybean crop was planted, against 81 percent a year earlier, researcher Celeres said Nov. 26. The nation is set to overtake the U.S. as the largest shipper this season.

China’s soybean imports may be 5 million to 6 million metric tons this month, Danping Liu, a risk analyst at Sinograins Oil Corp, said yesterday.

Wheat for March delivery added 0.1 percent to $8.9225 a bushel in Chicago, after reaching $8.955 yesterday, the most expensive since Nov. 12. Milling wheat for January delivery traded on NYSE Liffe in Paris was unchanged at 276 euros ($358.41) a ton.

“Tension remains lively in a context of tight balance sheets and weather conditions that are not very favorable at the start of the winter, mainly in the south of the U.S. and Russia,” Paris-based farm adviser Agritel wrote in a comment.

Corn for March delivery traded in Chicago added 0.3 percent to $7.665 a bushel.

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