Corn Rises to 4-Month High as Brazil’s Dry Weather May Hurt Crop

February 18, 2014 02:30 AM
 
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Corn rose to the highest level since September and soybeans gained amid concern that dry weather will hurt crops in Brazil.

A heat wave in Brazil and the country’s driest rainy season in decades prompted researcher AgRural to reduce its soybean harvest estimate yesterday, following cuts last week by Agroconsult and Celeres. Parts of Mato Grosso and Parana, Brazil’s biggest producers of corn and soybeans, received less than 60 percent of normal rainfall in the past 90 days, data from World Ag Weather show.

"The dry conditions that hurt soybeans are also impacting corn," Vanessa Tan, an investment analyst at Phillip Futures Pte, said by phone from Singapore today.

Corn for May delivery rose 0.4 percent to $4.5275 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade by 6:15 a.m., the highest for a most-active contract since Sept. 30. Soybeans for delivery the same month rose 1 percent to $13.3775 a bushel. U.S. markets were shut yesterday for the Presidents day holiday.

Hedge-fund managers and other large speculators switched to a net-long position, or bets for higher prices, in corn futures for the first time since the end of June, according to U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data. Funds also increased their net-long position in soybean futures by 15 percent, CFTC data show.

Corn has rallied 7.3 percent this year after a 40 percent slump in 2013, the biggest loss among 24 futures tracked by the Standard & Poor’s GSCI index.

Wheat for May delivery rose 0.2 percent to $5.975 a bushel in Chicago, while milling wheat for November delivery traded on NYSE Liffe in Paris added 0.3 percent to 188.25 euros ($258.41) a metric ton.

 

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