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The CME Group wheat prices closed 'limit up'

Updated: 08/05/2010 @ 3:37pm

The Russian grain export ban announcement pushed the CME Group wheat market to a daily 'limit up' close Thursday. Corn and soybeans finished sharply higher.

The Dec corn futures settled 3 cents higher at $4.18. The Nov. soybean contract closed 4 3/4 cents higher at $10.29. The Sep. wheat futures ended up the daily limit of 60 cents at $7.85 3/4. So, tomorrow's wheat limit will be 90 cents compared to its regular 60-cent limit. Dec. soymeal is $0.30 per short ton higher at $295.40. The Dec. soyoil futures closed 10 points lower at $42.00.

In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil is $0.43 per barrel lower, the dollar is lower, and the Dow Jones Industrials are down 22 points.

Tim Hannagan, PFGBest.com senior analyst, says the market is solely focused on the Russian announcement of banning grain exports from Aug. 15-Sept.

"Well, we don’t have to figure out how much wheat Russia won't sell this year because the answer is none. Thursday, Russia announced exports of all grains are canceled through years-end. And if winter wheat planting in September is off 20 or 30%, then talk of the grain export suspension going into 2011 will enter.

Hannagan adds, "This had wheat open up the 60 cent limit. Talk of prior sales being canceled for future shipment has U.S. sales soaring with today's export sales report showing 854 t.m.t. of wheat was sold last week, with Egypt a major player. Egypt turned away from the U.S. the last year in favor of Russian wheat and now comes crawling back," Hannagan says.

Russia will begin planting its winter crop in September.

"Should the drought continue through September and early October, talk of acreage reductions of 20 percent to 30 percent will surface.  Farmers are already talking about not planting wheat until rains come. The crop goes dormant in November until spring breaks in April. Some planting could resume then, but the early planting failure would already be priced in. This could push wheat to $10.00 or higher," Hannagan says.

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