Wheat firms on short-covering, export hopes; corn, soy also jump
* Wheat, corn, soy break through key technical levels
* Hopes for improved U.S. wheat exports fuel gains
* Dry weather curbs outlook for Brazil crop production
(Adds closing prices)
By Karl Plume
CHICAGO, Jan 17 (Reuters) - U.S. corn, soybean and wheat
futures climbed for a second straight session on Thursday in a
short-covering and technical bounce following a steep drop
earlier this week.
Gains in wheat ignited the rally as hopes for a pickup in
U.S. wheat export demand pushed prices through key technical
levels. Corn and soybeans promptly followed and also broke
through chart resistance points.
"We're still seeing some short covering after that large
sell-off on Tuesday," said Tim Marsh, analyst with Summit
Grain futures fell to multi-week lows earlier in the week on
concerns about slow progress in talks to resolve the U.S.-China
trade war that has slashed Chinese demand for U.S. soybeans and
Markets have since been clawing back from those lows,
awaiting any news of grain purchases promised by Beijing or
signs that a deal to end the bitter trade fight could be reached
by a March 2 deadline, when U.S. tariffs on Chinese products are
due to jump.
Adverse weather in South America continued to underpin corn
and soy markets. Numerous crop watchers have scaled back their
harvest forecasts for Argentina and Brazil due to stressful
The Buenos Aires Grains exchange cut its forecast for
Argentine soybean plantings to 17.7 million hectares, from 17.9
million hectares previously, due to excessive rains.
Chicago Board of Trade March soybeans jumped 13-1/4
cents to $9.07-3/4 a bushel, breaking through chart resistance
at its 20- and 50-day moving averages. The contract's
1.5-percent rise was its steepest since Nov. 28.
March corn rose 6 cents, or 1.6 percent, to $3.80 a
bushel, the contract's strongest gain since Oct. 26. Buying
accelerated as prices broke through chart resistance at key
technical levels, including the 50- and 100-day moving averages.
CBOT March wheat was up 5-1/4 cents at $5.17-3/4 a
bushel. The contract ended nearly 5 cents off its session high
and settled near its 50-day moving average.
Concerns that harsh cold could threaten vulnerable wheat
crops in the U.S. Plains that do not have a protective blanket
of snow supported the wheat market, traders said.
Continued speculation that top wheat exporter Russia may
move to curb exports also supported futures, although Moscow has
not officially changed its export outlook.
(Additional reporting by Nigel Hunt in London and Naveen
Thukral in Singapore; editing by James Dalgleish and Chizu
First Published: 2019-01-17 03:53:46
Updated 2019-01-17 22:10:21
© 2019 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved. Reuters content is the intellectual property of Thomson Reuters or its third party content providers. Any copying, republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Thomson Reuters. Thomson Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon. "Reuters" and the Reuters Logo are trademarks of Thomson Reuters and its affiliated companies.