U.S. grains: Soybeans end higher for direction amid Argentine supply woes

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Chicago | Reuters – U.S. soybean futures ended higher on Tuesday after trading both sides of even as the markets weighed South American rainfall against the ongoing labor strike disrupting Argentine exports, while traders took profits ahead of the U.S. holiday break.

U.S. wheat futures also benefited from the cargo backups in Argentina, and corn ended higher.

The most active soybean futures on the Chicago Board of Trade added 2-1/2 cents to $12.50 per bushel, after reaching $12.56-1/4, their highest since June 23, 2014.

CBOT wheat rose 5-3/4 cents to $6.17 per bushel, while corn futures gained 3-1/2 cents to $4.44-1/4 per bushel.

Rainfall in parts of Argentina and Brazil pressured U.S. soybean futures, though persistent dryness remains a threat to crops amid strong global demand and tight stocks.

Continued dryness has led Brazilian growers association Aprosoja to cut the country’s 2020/2021 soybean forecast by 2% to 127 million tonnes.

China is expected to import more than 100 million tonnes of soybeans in 2020, a record high, according to state-owned grain trader COFCO.

The ongoing strike in Argentina, meanwhile, offered support to both soybeans and wheat markets, as the absence of grain and oilseeds originating from South America has left buyers looking to the United States for supply.

“What has been a friendly factor is this port strike in Argentina,” said Mark Schultz, chief analyst at Northstar Commodity. “You might see some more business coming for quick shipment for wheat, if you can’t get it from Argentina,” he said.

A firm dollar tempered U.S. wheat export prospects, even as Russian steps to curb its shipments raised prospects for other countries to win extra demand.

Additional precipitation across the U.S. Great Plains may benefit winter wheat crops, adding pressure to markets.

“There were additional rains for the southern plains in the extended model,” said Joe Vaclavik, president of Standard Grain.

–Additional reporting by Gus Trompiz in Paris and Colin Packham in Sydney.

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