US corn prices steadied on Friday but were on track for the biggest weekly loss in 21 months on continued selling pressure after a US government report last week showed higher stockpiles than expected. Soyabeans fell to a fresh 10-month low on fears of a potential drop in feed demand due to bird flu in China and seasonal pressure from the harvest of massive soya crops in South America.
Wheat edged lower on technical selling but fund short-covering and unconfirmed rumours of China buying US soft wheat underpinned prices. At the Chicago Board of Trade as of 10:05 am CDT (1505 GMT), corn was up 1 cent at $6.31 per bushel, a day after falling to $6.27, the lowest spot corn price since late June. The contract was on track for a weekly loss of more than 9 percent, the biggest weekly drop on a continuous chart since June 2011. CBOT May wheat was down 3-3/4 cents at $6.90-1/4.
Soyabean and soyameal futures fell on worries that bird flu might spread in China and reduce feed demand in the world’s top soya importer. CBOT May soyabeans were down 11-1/2 cents at $13.60-1/2 a bushel, after falling to $13.57-1/4, the lowest spot soyabean price since June 6. Spot soyameal futures also hit a 10-month low. For the week, CBOT soyabeans are down 3 percent, a second consecutive week of decline, while wheat has managed to gain 0.5 percent. Traders were watching to see whether the corn market had reached a bottom after dropping more than $1 a bushel, nearly 15 percent, since the US Department of Agriculture in a quarterly report last week showed larger-than-expected US stockpiles.