Wheat recovers from 5-month low; corn extends gains

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SINGAPORE — Chicago wheat futures rose 2% on Monday, with the market rising for the first time in six sessions and recovering from its lowest in more than five months, although hopes for a pick-up in Ukrainian exports limited gains.

Corn gained more ground on concerns over hot weather threatening the U.S. crop in its critical phase of pollination.

“Prices in the futures market have been reacting to the news on Black Sea wheat exports,” said Ole Houe, director of advisory services at agriculture brokerage IKON Commodities in Sydney. “But we are not sure how much wheat is going to come out of Russia and Ukraine.”

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The most-active wheat contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) rose 2% to $7.92-1/2 a bushel, by 0317 GMT, after dropping to its weakest since Feb. 10 at $7.66 a bushel in the last session.

Corn added 0.5% to $6.06-3/4 a bushel, while soybeans gained 1.1% at $13.57-1/2 a bushel.

Russia’s proposals on how to resume Ukrainian grain exports were “largely supported” by negotiators at talks this week in Istanbul and an agreement is close, the Russian defense ministry said on Friday.

The disruption to Black Sea shipping routes caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine sparked a rally that pushed wheat futures near record highs by early-March.

Ukrainian farmers have threshed 3.6 million tonnes of grain of the 2022 grain harvest from about 10% of the sowing area, Ukrainian agriculture ministry said on Friday.

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French farmers had harvested 50% of this year’s soft wheat crop by July 11 compared with 14% a week earlier and far ahead of last season after hot and dry weather boosted crop development, farm office FranceAgriMer said on Friday.

French farmers had only harvested 3% of the soft wheat crop by the same time in 2021.

Conditions across most of Argentina’s vast farm lands will remain mostly dry over the next week, the Buenos Aires Grains Exchange said on Thursday, just a few hours after its peer in Rosario cut its estimate for the wheat crop by 4.3% due to drought affecting important agricultural provinces.

Egypt’s state grains buyer the General Authority for Supply Commodities is seeking an unspecified amount of wheat in international purchasing tender.

Large speculators cut their net long position in CBOT corn futures in the week to July 12, regulatory data released on Friday showed.

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s weekly commitments of traders report also showed that noncommercial traders, a category that includes hedge funds, increased their net short position in CBOT wheat and cut their net long position in soybeans. (Reporting by Naveen Thukral; Editing by Rashmi Aich)

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