CHICAGO: US wheat futures dropped nearly 2 percent on Monday on poor export demand for US supplies and lessened concerns about damage to the dormant US crop, traders said.
Soybeans weakened as worries eased about a truckers’ strike in Brazil slowing shipments of newly harvested supplies from that country.
“The truck strike in Brazil and the winter weather (in the United States), both of those were last week’s news,” said Mike Zuzolo of Global Commodity Analytics.
The declines in wheat and soybeans spilled over into corn, which followed the other agricultural commodities lower.
Wheat posted the biggest loss following news that Egypt, the world’s largest buyer of the grain, had snapped up 110,000 tonnes of Russian and Ukrainian supplies in its latest tender.
“We have had some demand (recently),” said Mark Schultz, chief analyst at Northstar Commodity Investment Co. “But that has to be sustained in order to give us some support.”
Chicago Board of Trade soft red winter wheat for May delivery was down 9-3/4 cents at $ 5.03-1/4 per bushel at 11:19 a.m. CST (1601 GMT).
Recent snow in the US Plains and Midwest provided a protective blanket for the dormant crop in key production areas, calming fears about freeze damage and causing some investors to take a risk premium out of the market. More snow was forecast, which will further boost soil moisture.
The US Agriculture Department’s National Agriculture Statistics Service will issue its monthly reports on the condition of the crop in large winter wheat-growing states on Monday afternoon.
CBOT May soybeans were 15-1/4 cents lower at $ 10.16-1/2 a bushel. The contract fell below support at its 100-day moving average.
Striking truck drivers resumed some roadblocks in Brazil on Monday even as the government cracked down on protesters and promised to implement a law to lower toll costs and give other benefits to the transport sector. Nationwide there were 24 road blockages in four states, down from 99 a week ago.
CBOT May corn was 5 cents lower at $ 3.88-1/4 a bushel.