Roundup: CBOT agricultural futures keep rallying

By Xu Jing

CHICAGO, Jan. 16 (Xinhua) -- Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) agricultural futures went higher in the past week on bullish U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) crop reports, occasionally spotted with declines on profit taking.

Spot CBOT corn scored a 7.5-year high on rising global feedgrain markets. And there's no evidence that U.S. export demand will be slowing through at least the next 3 months. AgResource maintains a total U.S. corn consumption forecast of 15,075 million bushels, 500 million bushels above the USDA forecast. There's a real need for acreage expansion and record yields across the North Hemisphere in 2021 if global supplies are to be partially replenished. The bullish trend will be ongoing into summer.

AgResource pegs the next resistance price for corn at 5.70 to 6.00 U.S. dollars. With an erosion in Brazilian safrinha yield potential amid record low soil moisture and delayed soybean crop development, the world could be stripped of another 8 to 10 million metric tons of feed supplies. A lasting bearish trend requires ideal summer weather across the United States, Europe and Ukraine. The corn demand bull market looks to march even higher into spring.

U.S. wheat futures soared to new rally highs as Russia confirmed it would place a 1.65-dollar-per-bushel tax on its wheat exports beginning March 1. If Russian farmers fail to boost sales in the next 30 days, it would force 3 to 5 million metric tons of wheat demand to North America. Europe does not have the supply which will raise the cost of world wheat. Russian FOB wheat offers soared to over 300 dollars per metric ton late Friday or 8.20 dollars per bushel.

Russia can extend the tax system into 2021-2022 crop year and the general attitude of countries protecting domestic food supplies is bullish non-Russian wheat prices.

Perceived yield loss pushes spot CBOT wheat above 7.50 dollars. Cash sales are on hold as there will be a need to expand global wheat seedings, even in the United States. Rising world corn/feed markets lend additional support.

CBOT soybean futures marked another week of gains and finished above 14 dollars. The January USDA reports were bullish. The USDA cut the yield by 0.5 bushels per acre (BPA), but made surprising increases to both the crush/export forecasts. Some had viewed the December stocks estimate of 175 million bushels as being the pipeline figure that the USDA would not pierce. The January balance sheet estimate showed year-end stocks falling to 140 million bushels.

AgResource predicts the minimum supply of U.S. soybeans at the end of the 2020-2021 crop year being 120 to 140 million bushels.

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