Corn futures rebound as U.S. harvest concerns linger

November 15th, 2011


Category: Grains, Oilseeds

(Forexpros) – Corn futures were up for the first time in five days on Tuesday, rebounding from a four-week low as lingering concerns over the U.S. corn crop harvest boosted prices.

On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, corn futures for December delivery traded at USD6.3762 a bushel during European morning trade, gaining 0.67%.

It earlier rose by as much as 0.85% to trade at a daily high of USD6.3812 a bushel.

Agricultural commodities shrugged off a stronger U.S. dollar and negative developments surrounding the euro zone’s debt crisis, instead focusing on market fundamentals.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture said in its weekly crop progress report published after markets closed Monday that approximately 93% of the U.S. corn crop was harvested as of November 13, compared to 98% during the same week a year earlier.

Some mild bargain-buying also lent support after prices fell to USD6.3000 a bushel on Monday, the lowest since October 13, as Wall Street investment bank Goldman Sachs reiterated its ‘overweight’ recommendation on corn futures, despite the European debt crisis.

In a report published Monday, the bank raised its three-month average corn price forecast to USD6.8500 a bushel, up from a previous estimate of USD6.1500 a bushel, citing tightening U.S. supplies and higher feed demand.

The U.S. produced 38% of the world’s corn last year, making it the both world’s largest corn producing nation and the largest exporter of the grain.

Commodity traders continued to monitor developments out of the euro zone surrounding the region’s debt crisis.

Italy’s 10-year bond yields rose to near unsustainable levels, climbing above 7%, while Spanish 10-year yields rose above 6% for the first time since the European Central Bank started to buy the country’s bonds in August.

The news weighed heavily on the euro, while the dollar index, which tracks the performance of the greenback versus a basket of six other major currencies, was up 0.47% to trade at 78.02.

Elsewhere on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, wheat for December delivery added 0.2% to trade at USD6.1650 a bushel, while soybeans for January delivery jumped 1.25% to trade at USD11.9363 a bushel.

The U.S. 2011 soybean harvest was 96% complete compared with 92% a week before and 99% a year earlier, according to the USDA, while 96% of the U.S. winter wheat crop had been seeded by Sunday and that 83% had emerged.

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