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Soybeans flip, surge past $12/bushel

Jeff Caldwell 12/28/2011 @ 11:45am Multimedia Editor for Agriculture.com and Successful Farming magazine.

Soybeans have made a comeback from earlier bearishness and now join corn and wheat futures in the black at mid-day.

March corn is 8 1/4 cents higher at $6.41 1/2 per bushel while March wheat's 9 cents higher at $6.53 3/4, according to Barchart.com. January soybeans have recovered from earlier weakness to trade 3 3/4 cents higher, cracking the $12/bushel mark at $12.03 1/2 per bushel.

There are 2 sides developing on the South American crop weather stress situation that's been largely behind the rally in the grains. First, some say it's going to be a bullish factor for some time, at least until the weather improves in Brazil and Argentina. But, others say the crop stress in South America could eventually turn bearish if it lingers too long.

"IF (and it is a big 'if') weather remains inflammatory into January and February for South America, I can make a case for the 'highs' to be in for '2012,' as sharply higher prices now will only encourage even more production and in some cases reduced demand in the Northern Hemisphere," said Jim Bower of Bower Trading, Inc., in Chicago in a newsletter to his customers on Wednesday morning.

There are still a lot of soybean acres yet to be planted on account of the dry conditions in South America, but the corn is in the middle of pollination, arguably the most critical development time for the crop. So, other analysts and traders feel that could aim more upward momentum toward the corn pits.

"It's the realization that corn is hurting a lot worse in South America right now than soybeans," says AgTraderTalk.com market analyst and trader Kevin Penner. Corn is pollinating and there's still really another month before heat will jack up the beans."

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