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Corn, wheat close higher

Updated: 01/20/2012 @ 1:57pm

DES MOINES, Iowa (Agriculture.com)--After trading mixed most of the session, the CME Group corn, soybean, and wheat markets closed mostly higher Friday.

The March corn futures settled 5 1/2 cents higher at $6.11 1/2. The March soybean contract closed 10 cents lower at $11.87. The March wheat futures ended 4 1/2 cents higher at $6.10 1/2. The March soymeal futures settled $3.80 per short ton lower at $311.90. The March soyoil futures ended $0.63 lower at $50.43.
In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil is $2.19 per barrel lower, the dollar is higher and the Dow Jones Industrials are up 55 points.

While yesterday's market focused on strong grain demand and less on supportive crop-weather forecasts for Argentina, today's trading is different, one CME Group floor trader, requesting anonymity, says.

"Today, of course, the opposite is occurring, as the market seems to be focusing on good weather, lower oil , hangover from bearish USDA reports," the trader says. 

The strong market yesterday had everything to do with the market digesting announcements of corn and bean export sales to S Korea, Mexico( corn) and China (beans). The market was waiting for the sharply lower prices in both commodities to generate interest...and they did, she says. 

Even though needed rain occurred in South America's upcoming weekend forecast, there is an opinion in the market that some sales that typically go to SA will end up moving to US.

Meanwhile, cheap world feed wheat has rallied sharply, to where US is competitive, a separate CME Group floor trader, requesting anonymity, says. 

"So, feed grains find support. The Former Soviet Union's shallow port capacity and cold weather usually slows export logistics this time of year. Plus, there has been some fear that they have oversold there capacity. Wheat is a record short so it helps to support the market.

Weekend rains predicted with a chance to add back acres and yield in beans. For corn, perhaps it's too late. So, that is bearish beans for now."

Thursday's exports were good but too late, he says. "U.S. bean exports remain 405 million bushels behind last year's pace, while USDA has only discounted soy exports by I believe 225. We are three weeks from the main Brazil harvest starting."

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