Chicago Close: Wheat Jumps on Short Covering



Soybean futures continued to slide but wheat futures surged in post-U.S. Thanksgiving holiday trade on Friday.

The benchmark Chicago wheat market jumped to a six-month high on aggressive short-covering amid various global weather threats. Wet weather is impacting planting in parts of the EU, while drought has negatively impacted the Australian crop. Closer to home, the late U.S. corn and soybean harvests are raising worries that American winter wheat planted area could fall further from already low levels. The weekly export sales report from the USDA this morning also showed U.S. all wheat export sales for the week ending Nov. 21 above expectations at 612,655 tonnes. According to the CME market comment, the Chicago/KC wheat premium at $1.12 3/4 is now the highest on record, back to 2004. Chicago futures also hold a premium to spring wheat futures of 54 3/4 cents, the highest spread favouring Chicago since September 2007. December Chicago wheat climbed 19 cents on the day to $5.47 ½, December Kansas City was up 12 cents at $4.38 ¾ and December Minneapolis added 6 cents to $4.94 ½.

The gains in wheat helped to push corn higher as did forecasts calling for snow in the northwestern Corn Belt, which is expected to slow an already lagging U.S. harvest. The export sales report this morning showed weekly corn sales within expectations at 806,751 tonnes. December corn was up 8 ½ cents at $3.71 ¼ and new-crop December 2020 added 2 cents to $3.91.

Soybeans closed lower for the sixth straight day, falling to an 11-week low, as the market continued to await news on the so-called phase one trade deal between the U.S. and China. On the other hand, soybean export sales from this morning’s report exceeded trade expectations, with 1.664 million tonnes sold the week ending Nov. 21. January beans lost 5 ¼ cents to $8.76 ¾ and new-crop November fell 3 ¾ cents to $9.27.

Live cattle ended lower today. Lean hogs were higher.

Source: DePutter Publishing Ltd.

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