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Farm markets close lower

Updated: 09/16/2011 @ 3:02pm

DES MOINES, Iowa (Agriculture.com)--The sell-off continued to pressure the CME Group grain and soybean futures prices Friday.

The Dec. corn futures settled 9 cents lower at $6.92. The Nov. soybean contract closed 3 1/4 cents lower at $13.55 1/2. The Dec. wheat futures closed 7 3/4 cents lower at $6.88 1/4. The Dec. soymeal futures closed $0.90 per short ton lower at $353.10. The Dec. soyoil futures settled $0.31 higher at $56.86.

In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil is $1.45 per barrel lower, the dollar is higher and the Dow Jones Industrials are up 68 points.

Brian Basting,  Advance Trading Inc. market analyst, says the markets suffered from a sell-off based on technical follow-through. "Once Dec. corn futures failed to hold that $7.00 mark that was a key signal for folks to sell. Fundamentally, this week's exports were strong but shipments are not going so well."

With more wheat being used to replace corn as a feedstock, corn is running into a lot of competition. Plus, with Argentina estimating record corn production this year, there is more world competition for the U.S. corn market,Basting says.

Meanwhile, with the soybean market shaving off nearly $1.00 since its August peak, some farmers may be wondering when their next chance to sell might be. Basting says to not hesitate to cash-in on these historically high prices.

"Farmers can still sell cash beans and buy a 'call' option to capture anymore upside there might be. And, it would be prudent to buy a 'put' option to protect their floor price. There are some wonderful opportunities out there, this year, for farmers," Basting says.

Meanwhile, the frost and freeze event this week looks to have fallen short of a five-state event. Instead, it reportedly hit three states with losses of up to about 50 million bushels, Tim Hannagan, PFGBest.com senior grain analyst says. "You can't tell on frost problems until the harvest occurs and weights of corn are down ,as well as beans with smaller soy oil content. So, it's all farmer opinions that we're hearing on crop losses."

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