Chicago agricultural commodities close lower on big harvest prospects

Publish time: 25th August, 2016      Source: Xinhua News Agency
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CHICAGO, Aug. 24 (Xinhua) -- Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) grains futures closed lower Wednesday, pressured by favorable Midwest weather and ongoing expectations that U.S. farmers will harvest bumper corn and soybean crops this year.

The most active corn contract for December delivery was down 1 cent, or 0.3 percent, to 3.3625 dollars per bushel. December wheat delivery fell 1.25 cents, or 0.29 percent, to 4.2625 dollars per bushel. November soybeans fell 8.25 cents, or 0.81 percent, to 10.0525 dollars per bushel.

Soybeans led the way lower, buffeted by data from an annual Midwest crop tour suggesting large crop yields, which echoes forecasts from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for a record U.S. Harvest.

Recent rainfall in the Farm Belt also weighed on the soybean market, with plentiful moisture seen as friendly to crops during August, the most critical month for determining yields. Although there is strong foreign demand for U.S. oilseed supplies, analysts said the coming U.S. crop may well be able to satiate that demand.

Corn and wheat prices declined, weighed down in part by a stronger U.S. dollar, which effectively makes domestic agricultural products like grain more expensive for overseas buyers. The buck was up 0.2% in midday trade.

Corn's losses were more modest, as tour results looked mixed.

Corn in southwestern Iowa showed above average yield potential but lagged behind the U.S. government's record projection for the country's top corn producing state, scouts found on Wednesday. Central Illinois cornfields also looked impressive, but may yield less than the record-large hauls of the past few years.

Losses in the corn market were capped, however, by ongoing evidence of export demand. The USDA on Wednesday said private exporters booked sales of 101,600 metric tons of corn for delivery to unknown destinations during the 2016-17 crop year.