Corn futures rose for the second straight day on speculation that the U.S. Department of Agriculture will lower its crop projectins following the most-severe Midwest drought since the 1930s. Wheat and soybeans fell.
The 2012 harvest probably was 10.65 billion bushels, down 0.7 percent from the USDA’s estimate in December, according to a Bloomberg News survey of 31 analysts. Corn futures reached a record $8.49 a bushel on Aug. 10. The USDA is set to release its latest crop statistics on Jan. 11.
“It scares me that everybody is thinking production will be lowered because our stockpiles are already low enough,” Darrell Holaday, the president of Advanced Market Concepts in Wamego, Kansas, said in a telephone interview. “If we come in even 100 million bushels lower on production, there’s room for prices to go higher.”
Corn futures for March delivery gained 0.5 percent to settle at $6.8875 a bushel at 2 p.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. The price, up 0.8 percent yesterday, has gained 7 percent in the past 12 months.
Wheat futures for March delivery fell 0.1 percent at $7.505 a bushel. The price has gained 20 percent in the past 12 months.
Soybean futures for March delivery dropped 0.1 percent to $13.865 a bushel. The oilseed has advanced 16 percent in the past 12 months.
Corn is the biggest U.S. crop, followed by soybeans, hay and wheat, USDA data show.