Monday, January 21, 2019
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Corn Extends Decline as Seeding of Crop Almost Complete

Corn fell for a fourth day in Chicago after a report showed U.S. planting is near completion and most crops are in good condition, improving the prospects for record production. Wheat retreated for a 10th session.

U.S. farmers had planted 95 percent of corn in main growing areas as of June 1, and 76 percent of crops were in good or excellent condition, better than the 63 percent that received the top ratings at that time last year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said yesterday. The Midwest will see frequent rain this week, maintaining favorable moisture conditions while more sunlight may be needed to benefit growth, forecaster DTN said.

"Better-than-expected weather in the northern Corn Belt pushed corn, soybean and spring wheat planting progress back in line with, or above, normal," Morgan Stanley analysts including Bennett Meier said in an e-mailed report today. The USDA's report showed "healthy corn" with crops in the best condition for this time of year since 2010, the bank said.

Corn for July delivery fell 0.9 percent to $4.615 a bushel at 6:50 a.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. Prices fell to $4.6025 yesterday, the lowest for a most-active contract since Feb. 28. The grain has slipped 9 percent since the beginning of May, as farmers accelerated planting after fieldwork was delayed by rain and cold weather earlier this season.

Futures trading volumes were 37 percent lower than the average for the past 100 days for this time of day, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The U.S., the biggest corn grower and exporter, may produce a record 353.97 million metric tons from the next harvest, the USDA predicts. The agency pegs national yields at an all-time high at 165.3 bushels an acre. Morgan Stanley said risks for its yield estimate at 159 bushels an acre may be "skewed upwards" because of current good crop conditions.
Soybeans Slip

Soybeans for July delivery declined 0.5 percent to $14.925 a bushel. U.S. planting was 78 percent complete as of June 1, compared with the five-year average pace of 70 percent, the USDA said.

Wheat for July delivery dropped 0.3 percent to $6.19 a bushel in Chicago, erasing an earlier gain. Ten days of falling prices would mark the longest slump for most-active futures since September 1998. About 30 percent of U.S. winter wheat was in good or excellent condition as of June 1, unchanged from a week earlier, the agency said. Growing areas in the U.S. Great Plains have suffered from drought this year.

Milling wheat for November delivery was unchanged at 190.50 euros ($259.50) a ton on Euronext in Paris. The price is down 7.3 percent since the beginning of May.

To contact the reporters on this story: Whitney McFerron in London at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ; Phoebe Sedgman in Melbourne at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Dan Weeks, Bruce Stanley

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Contributing Editors

  • adrian muller has conducted seminars for the chicago board of trade, including a key series in 1999 which cautioned about a top in the equity markets (see his article “top experts and statistics on the dow”). adrian muller has appeared on cable tv financial programs with analysis on the futures markets and equity market directional forecasts. he has been quoted in barron's, the wall street journal, and futures magazine.

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