Sumit Roy: Corn hit by a double whammy of higher-than-expected inventories and plantings; other grains fared better.
Two reports from the U.S. Department of Agriculture sent grain prices skidding on Thursday. In its quarterly Grains Stocks report, the USDA said that corn stocks in the second quarter totaled 3.67 billion bushels, well above the 3.32 billion that was expected. Wheat and soybean stocks totaled 0.861 billion bushels and 0.619 billion bushels, respectively, also above expectations, of 0.824 billion and 0.595 billion.
Front-month July corn contracts were last down $0.71/bushel, or more than 10 percent, while longer-dated contracts all fell by the exchange limit of $0.30/bushel. Prices are now testing support near $6/bushel, which corresponds to the lows put in during March.
Wheat prices also careened by more than 8 percent, with prices decisively breaking below support near $6.50/bushel. Wheat is now at the lowest level since July of last year.
Soybeans were likely outperforming thanks to the USDA’s other release of the day, the Acreage report. In it, the department said that soybeans plantings totaled 75.2 million acres, below the analyst consensus of 76.6 million acres.
Wheat plantings totaled 56.4 million acres, also below expectations of 56.7 million. Meanwhile, corn’s underperformance is likely due to the fact that plantings for the grain totaled 92.3 million acres, above the 90.6-million-acre consensus.
Related tickers: Market Vectors Agribusiness ETF (NYSE:MOO), PowerShares DB Agriculture (NYSE:DBA), Teucrium Corn (NYSE:CORN), Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan, Inc. (NYSE:POT), Monsanto Co. (NYSE:MON).
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