CHICAGO, Feb 18: Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) wheat, soybean and corn futures closed higher Wednesday, as outside markets were largely supportive with crude oil rallying strongly and the soft US dollar lifting the appeal of dollar-denominated commodities.
Chicago corn led the gains as the most active corn contract for March delivery rose 4.25 cents, or 1.17 per cent, to close at 3.6725 US dollars per bushel. Wheat for March delivery added 4.25 cents, or 0.92 per cent, to close at 4.685 dollars per bushel. March soybean delivery gained 2.75 cents, or 0.31 per cent, to close at 8.825 dollars per bushel.
US grains and soybeans rallied for a second straight session Wednesday as prices of crude oil jumped more than 5 per cent for the day, lifting investors outlook for grains and soybeans used to produce biofuel, while funds that are currently holding very large short positions in grains and soybeans, continued to cut their short positions.
The weaker greenback also help send Chicago grains and soy higher Wednesday. The US Dollar Index, a measure of the dollar against six major currencies, fell by more than 0.1 per cent in the morning session despite upbeat US economic data and increasing expectations that the US central bank is likely to raise interest rates again this year.
Soybean gains were capped by improving weather forecast in South America. Analysts noted crop-friendly rainfalls are likely to benefit late-developing crops in Brazil and Argentina, where farmers are harvesting what is likely to be a massive crop, potentially buffeting demand for US supplies.