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Supply Chain

Corn Steadies After Rout As Supply Risks Weighed

By Donna Ahern
Corn Steadies After Rout As Supply Risks Weighed

Chicago corn rose on Friday, recouping some of its heavy losses a day earlier, as the market set a bigger-than-expected supply outlook from the U.S. government against crop stress in Brazil and sustained Chinese demand.

Wheat tracked the rebound in corn while soybeans also bounced after tumbling with cereals on Thursday when futures pulled away from recent multi-year highs.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's first full supply and demand projections for the 2021/22 season on Wednesday pegged world corn stocks well above the average estimate in a Reuters poll, including a U.S. stocks forecast that also surpassed the poll average.

The USDA report coupled with jitters in financial markets over inflation fuelled selling after corn's eight-year peak last week, pushing the most active contract on the Chicago Board Of Trade down more than 5% on Thursday.

On Friday, the contract was up 0.9% at $6.80-3/4 a bushel by 1034 GMT. It was recovering from a two-week low of $6.66 earlier in the session, but down 7% for the week, the biggest one-week loss since August 2019.

"After that dust settles, the market will get back to focussing how much or how little second-crop corn will be harvested in Brazil," said Tobin Gorey, director of agricultural strategy, Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

Brazil's Next Corn Harvest

The size of Brazil's next corn harvest will influence short-term availability after Chinese demand eroded global supplies. CBOT wheat rose 2.3% to $7.17-3/4 a bushel after sliding to a three-week low on Thursday.

Traders were weighing wheat harvest prospects in the northern hemisphere, with forecasts calling for limited rain and warm weather in parts of Russia raising some concerns despite forecasts this week pointing to a bumper harvest.

Rains expected in the southern U.S. Plains could boost winter wheat there, although dryness in northern spring wheat zones remained a risk, analysts said. CBOT soybeans were up 1.4% at $16.06 a bushel and remained on course for a seventh straight weekly gain, underpinned by low U.S. inventories and tensions in global vegetable oil markets.

News by Reuters edited by Checkout. For more supply chain stories click here. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.

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