Corn, soybean markets close mixed Friday

Corn and wheat prices dip, too.

On Friday, the CME Group’s farm markets close mixed.

At the close, the May corn futures finished ¼¢ higher at $5.39. July corn futures finished ¼¢ higher at $5.28½. New-crop December corn futures closed 4¾¢ lower at $4.78¾. 
May soybean futures closed ¼¢ lower at $14.13. July soybean futures ended 1¢ higher at $14.02¾. New-crop November soybean futures settled unchanged at $12.43¾.

May wheat futures closed 4¢ lower at $6.38¼. 

May soymeal futures finished $4.10 short term lower at $400.70.

May soy oil futures closed 0.75¢ higher at 55.36¢ per pound.

In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil market is -0.36 lower (-0.55%) at $65.66. The U.S. dollar is higher, and the Dow Jones Industrials are 245 points higher (+0.75%) at 32,730 points.

Bob Linneman, Kluis Advisors, says that investors are still eyeing the tight soybean stocks.  

“The U.S. is just 30 million bushels away from hitting the USDA soybean export target for the marketing year – and we still have five months to the marketing year to go. If we surpass the existing target before the end of March, traders expect the USDA to update its export target for the April supply and demand report. However, most traders are already trading a higher export number than what the USDA has pegged,” Linneman stated in a daily note to customers.

Linneman added, “The Dow Jones hit new all-time highs this week, and the S&P 500 is not far away from new all-time highs. When will momentum traders seek alternative assets? If the stock market starts to falter, then those traders could look to the commodity sector for their next trade.”

Greg Lumsden, product manager of Cargill Elevate Grain Advice, says that days after digesting the report from earlier this week, it feels like really short-term technicals are driving price action. 

“There are end users hoping for a break, buying hand-to-mouth on dips, and farmer selling is absent, which leaves funds to trade for short-term profits. March is historically a very difficult time for corn to rally and is normally flat to lower,” Lumsden says.  

Lumsden added, “Cash corn markets should support a lower price end near $5.30 per bushel, but during lull until March 31 intentions report, momentum could take us lower. For the time being, market willing to bide time until we get the next major input on stocks and acreage estimates at the end of the month. That report is typically a major market mover and, given how tight corn and bean stocks are, this year will be no different.”

While the markets do feel well supported by strong demand, one must respect the risk of big acreage estimates on this report, Lumsden says.

 “Just last year, the USDA estimated planted corn acres at 97 million vs. 90.8 million final estimate,” Lumsden says.

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