U.S. grains: Wheat tumbles ahead of deliveries, pressured by dollar

Reuters — Chicago wheat futures fell to a 2-1/2-month low on Friday, pressured by expectations of big deliveries next week and strength in the U.S. dollar, during a shortened trading session after the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday.

Expectations of big wheat deliveries, starting with first notice day on Monday for December contracts, weighed on the market, traders and analysts said. Estimates were for zero to 336 deliveries against Chicago wheat futures.

The U.S. dollar gained 0.2 per cent around midday, making U.S. exports less competitive on a day when weekly wheat export sales disappointed.

“The dollar is very strong, just killing anything that we export,” said Bill Biedermann, a trader at Allendale Inc.

Chicago Board of Trade December wheat dropped 13-1/2 cents or 2.8 per cent, to $4.65-3/4 a bushel, touching the lowest nearby price since Sept. 11 (all figures US$). For the week, the contract lost 4.7 per cent.

U.S. Department of Agriculture reported weekly U.S. wheat export sales of 303,700 tonnes for 2015-16, below the range of trade estimates from 400,000 to 600,000 tonnes.

December corn fell 6-3/4 cents or 1.8 per cent to $3.59-1/4 a bushel, despite larger-than-expected weekly corn sales of more than two million tonnes. It finished with a 1.1 per cent weekly loss.

January soybeans lost 2-1/4 cents or 0.2 per cent to $8.73 a bushel, weakened by ample world stocks. The contract gained 1.8 per cent for the week, its first weekly gain in six weeks.

Weekly soybean export sales of nearly 1.2 million tonnes fell in the low end of a range of expectations

U.S. markets were closed on Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Rod Nickel is a Reuters correspondent covering agriculture and mining from Winnipeg. Additional reporting for Reuters by Julie Ingwersen in Chicago.

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