Soybeans Slide a Fourth Day as Report Might Ease Supply Concern

Soybeans fell for a fourth day in Chicago before a U.S. government report predicted by analysts to show higher domestic reserves and rising South American crops. Wheat gained.

Brazil, set to become the world’s largest exporter, may produce a record 81.9 million metric tons this year, up from last month’s 81 million-ton forecast, according to a Bloomberg survey before the U.S. Department of Agriculture updates its estimates today at noon in Washington. U.S. soybean inventories before the next harvest may total 135 million bushels, above the prior forecast of 130 million, the survey showed.

“Thanks to expanded acreage and favorable weather conditions, corn and soybean harvests in South America should be very good, achieving record levels in some cases,” Carsten Fritsch, an analyst at Commerzbank AG in Frankfurt, said today in an e-mailed report. Soybean prices that slid in recent weeks already reflect easing supply tightness, and they might drop further if the USDA cuts demand forecasts, he said.

Soybeans for delivery in March declined 0.6 percent to $13.71 a bushel at 7:09 a.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. Prices have dropped 23 percent from a record $17.89 reached in September as a U.S. drought slashed yields. The oilseed is up 0.3 percent this week after touching a six-month low of $13.56 on Jan. 4.

Wheat Prices

Wheat for March delivery rose 0.1 percent to $7.45 a bushel, leaving the grain down 0.3 percent this week. Prices reached a six-month low at $7.3975 on Jan. 4. Milling wheat for delivery in March dropped 1.2 percent to 243 euros ($322) a ton on NYSE Liffe in Paris.

U.S. winter-wheat acreage probably climbed to a four-year high as prices and crop-insurance guarantees encouraged sowing, according to the survey. Dormant winter-wheat crops are in the worst condition since records began in 1985 because of the drought, according to the government.

“The USDA data batch will be the focus,” Luke Mathews, a Sydney-based analyst at Commonwealth Bank of Australia, wrote in a report. “These reports typically result in significant market volatility.”

Corn for March delivery was unchanged at $6.9875 a bushel in Chicago, for a weekly gain of 2.7 percent.

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