Soybeans Rally From 4.6% Drop as U.S. Farmers May Cut Plantings

Soybeans rebounded from a four-day decline of 4.6 percent amid concern that farmers in the U.S. will reduce plantings this year and as transportation delays in South America may tighten supplies.

Soybeans for May delivery gained as much as 0.4 percent to $14.225 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade and were at $14.21 at 12:02 p.m. Singapore time. The contract lost 4.6 percent in the four days to yesterday. Corn for March dropped 0.2 percent to $7.01 a bushel, sliding for an eighth day.

Farmers will plant 76 million acres of soybeans in 2013, a 1.6 percent drop from last year, and 96 million acres of corn, a 0.9 percent decline, as the U.S. recovers from the worst drought since the 1930s, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said yesterday. Plantings of wheat may increase 3.2 percent to 57.5 million acres, the USDA said in a 10-year forecast of trends. Soybean harvests in Brazil and Argentina will be a record this year, according to the USDA.

“Despite good crop prospects in South America, there are concerns over transportation problems that they can’t move quickly to ports,” Gu Jiong, an analyst at commodity broker Yutaka Shoji Co., said by phone from Tokyo.

Soybean production in Brazil and Argentina will jump 28 percent to 136.5 million metric tons this year and corn will rise 5.9 percent to an all-time high, the USDA said Feb. 8.

Australia, the second-biggest wheat exporter last season, raised its production forecast after farmers ended harvesting. Output is set to reach 22.1 million tons from 22 million tons estimated in December, the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences, or Abares, said today. Wheat for March delivery was little changed at $7.41 a bushel.

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