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CBOT crop futures post lower trading week amid weak export demand

2019-08-04 08:33

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CHICAGO, Aug. 3 (Xinhua) -- Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) agricultural futures reported a losing week again for the trading week which ended Aug. 2, as traders turned to technical selling on weak export demand from overseas markets.

The most active corn contract for December delivery was down 15 cents, or 3.53 percent week on week, to close at 4.095 dollars per bushel. September wheat was down 5.25 cents, or 1.06 percent, to settle at 4.9075 dollars per bushel. November soybeans were down 32.5 cents, or 3.61 percent, to close at 8.685 dollars per bushel.

On Monday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released its weekly crop progress report.

U.S. corn was rated 58 percent good or excellent as of Sunday, up from 57 percent the previous week, according to the USDA. The figure is still below the 72 percent that earned top ratings at this time last year. Analysts had forecast the crop at 56 percent good or excellent.

Some 58 percent of corn crop is silking, well behind the prior five-year average of 83 percent for this time of year, while 13 percent is in the dough stage vs. the normal 23 percent.

About 54 percent of soybeans were in good or excellent condition at the start of the week, the government said in its report. That's unchanged week to week. Analysts had expected a 1-percentage-point decline.

Just 57 percent of the crop is blooming, behind the average of 79 percent; 21 percent is setting pods, less than half the normal 45 percent for this time of year, the USDA said.

U.S. and world corn prices ended lower again this week as the market continue to digest the rapid slowdown in demand and rising old crop carryover stocks. Yield prospects of corn futures have also improved across the corn belt since mid-July.

CBOT wheat futures followed corn to modest losses. Analysts said the world cash market for wheat continues to look for major exporter demand, which it's struggling to find.

Russian exports in July are pegged at 2.2 million metric tons, which is much lower than last year's 3.8 million metric tons. EU export volumes are down 15 percent from last year in July.

Soybean futures finished the week sharply lower with the market sliding in early week trading and falling sharply in the first half of the week on renewed fund selling. U.S. soybeans also faced pressure from the weak demand from foreign markets.

U.S. private traders exported 383,000 metric tons of wheat to overseas market as of July 25, according to the weekly export sales report released Thursday by the USDA.

U.S. corn export sales totaled 272,600 metric tons, below forecasts for 300,000 to 850,000 metric tons, according to the USDA.

USDA said that export sales of soybeans totaled 448,600 metric tons as of July 25. Analysts had been expecting soy export sales in a range from 100,000 metric tons to 700,000 metric tons.

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