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GRAINS-Soybeans off 3-year low, but gain limited by global supplies

Credit: REUTERS/DIEGO VARA

By P.J. Huffstutter

CHICAGO, March 1 (Reuters) - Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) soybean futures turned higher on Friday on signs of bargain buying and short-covering, after hitting three-year lows the previous day, although sluggish exports and hefty global supplies continue to weigh on prices, traders said.

Any rallies were limited by tension between uncertainty over mainland China's import demand and forecasts of a huge Brazilian soybean crop despite a tough growing season, they added.

Agribusiness consultancy StoneX on Friday raised its forecast for Brazil's 2023/2024 soybean crop to 151.5 million metric tons, citing improved climate conditions in a season marked by excessive heat and dryness in key production regions.

News of global crop trader and processor Bunge BG.N accepting 348 contracts delivered against CBOT March soybean futures SH24 added some early support to the soy complex, analysts said, signalling commercial demand for the commodity.

Meanwhile, the wheat futures market faced headwinds from ample Black Sea supplies and mounting questions about when shipments booked by China will be shipped.

"There's a massive China export book, and we're just not seeing the shipments happen," said Angie Setzer, partner of Consus Ag Consulting. "There's a growing sense in the market that some of these Chinese bookings might get rolled forward."

The Biden administration will delay the planned Friday announcement of its revised climate emissions model for ethanol due to disagreements, two sources familiar with the matter said.

This extends uncertainty on whether the corn-based fuel will qualify for new sustainable aviation fuel tax credits.

(Additional reporting by Julie Ingwersen in Chicago; Naveen Thukral in Singapore and Sybille de La Hamaide in Paris; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips, Rashmi Aich, Sohini Goswami and Alexander Smith)

((pj.huffstutter@thomsonreuters.com; 313-484-5275 (w);))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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