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Soy, wheat prices finish up

Updated: 01/26/2012 @ 2:20pm

DES MOINES, Iowa (Agriculture.com)--Profit-taking capped gains for the CME Group corn market, while soybean and wheat prices finished higher Thursday.

The March corn futures closed unchanged at $6.34 1/2. The March soybean contract settled 9 1/4 cents higher at $12.22 3/4. The March wheat futures ended 12 1/4 cents higher at $6.53 1/2. The March soymeal futures settled $2.50 per short ton higher at $323.60. The March soyoil futures closed $0.55 higher $51.94.
In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil is $0.48 per barrel higher, the dollar is lower and the Dow Jones Industrials are down 33 points.

Jack Scoville, PRICE Futures Group vice president, says the markets are underpinned now but farmer-selling may be right around the corner.

"Not hearing any specifics, but everyone has targeted $6.50, or so, in March Corn and I guess somewhere around $12.40 March Soybeans as a place to go, and we are close. I had some profit-taking show up today on the rally. So, I am sure I am not alone.  Lots of talk that farmers might start to sell, due to very strong basis and rebounding futures. But, I have not been able to confirm much action yet. I think that type of selling may have capped the rally and I think now we will trade mostly sideways."

Meanwhile, in Mato Grosso, Brazil, farmers are looking at a bumper soybean crop in 2012, according to reporters with Gazeta do Povo, traveling this week on the annual Crop Expedition Tour. 

In northeast Mato Grosso, farmers just starting harvest season are reporting yields of 55 bags per hectare vs. 48-50 bags a year ago.

In the southern state of Parana, soybean harvest season is just beginning. Soybeans in that southern Brazilian state have suffered from timely rainfall. In the past two weeks, rainfall has been plentiful, but it's too late, field reporters say. In Parana, early soybean production estimates of 14.9 million metric tons have been dropped to 12.8 mmt. For corn, the Parana farmers are expected to harvest a crop of 4.6 mmt vs. 5.86 mmt estimate earlier in the season, according to Gazeta do Povo's Crop Expedition Tour.

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