GRAINS-Corn plunges 3.6 pct as record-large U.S. harvest looms
* Corn falls on record-large harvest view, technical selling
* Soybeans firm on yield concerns, but lower corn weighs
* Wheat eases with sinking corn
(Updates with corn extending losses, soybeans retreating from highs, adds quote, updates with closing prices) CHICAGO, Aug 13 (Reuters) - U.S. corn futures slid more than 3 percent on Tuesday, surrendering all of the prior day's gains as investors shifted their focus from Monday's low U.S. government corn yield estimate to its forecast for a record-large harvest and plentiful stockpile next season. New-crop December corn fell to a near-three-year low as technical selling propelled the contract's steep break in more than six weeks and its seventh decline in nine sessions. Autumn-harvest soybeans extended the previous day's gains on continued support from the U.S. Agriculture Department reduction in its U.S. soy crop forecast, but the advance was limited by a slightly wetter Midwest weather forecast and spillover pressure from corn. "There's a prevailing thought that USDA's (corn) production number is probably understated. They had less data to work with this year than in the past because of the delayed development so they had to use some historical assumptions," said Shawn McCambridge, analyst with Jefferies Bache. "The reality is that we have the largest crop in history and an almost 1.9-billion-bushel carryout isn't exactly tight." The USDA on Monday cut its forecast for corn yields to 154.4 bushels per acre from its July estimate of 156.5 bushels, but numerous analysts said the yield would likely be raised when the forecast is updated next month. The immaturity of this season's corn crop meant that USDA was unable to weigh many of the ears they were counting so they used a derived weight. USDA estimated the U.S. soybean yield at 42.6 bushels per acre, down from 44.5 bushels, but analysts stressed that weather over the coming weeks could shift that figure considerably in either direction.
FOCUS ON WEATHER Warmer weather forecast for the Midwest next week should help accelerate crop development. Spotty rains were a concern, but an updated forecast at midday suggested that western Iowa, one of the driest areas of the corn belt this summer, may receive beneficial rains in the coming days. "The North American weather model has a big area of about 2 inches of rain in Iowa by the weekend and that's definitely an increase from what we saw 24 hours ago. The GFS model is still staying dry, but it brings in more question about being a long position holder in beans," said Mike Zuzolo, president of Global Commodity Analytics. Chicago Board of Trade December corn futures dropped 16-3/4 cents, or 3.6 percent, to $4.47-1/4 a bushel. It was the steepest decline since a larger-than-expected USDA acreage estimate sent new-crop futures down 5 percent on June 28. CBOT November soybeans gained 2-1/2 cents to settle at $12.27-3/4 per bushel after earlier hitting a 2-1/2 week peak of $12.35. August soybeans fell 14 cents to $13.59-3/4 as traders rolled out of the contract and into deferred months ahead of its expiration on Wednesday. CBOT September wheat eased with sinking corn, shedding 6-3/4 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $6.28-1/4 a bushel. Commodity funds sold a net 12,000 corn contracts and 3,000 wheat contracts on the day, but were net even in soybeans, trade sources estimated.
Prices at 1:41 p.m. CDT (1841 GMT)
LAST NET PCT YTD CHG CHG CHG CBOT corn 455.25 -17.00 -3.6% -34.8% CBOT soy 1359.75 -14.00 -1.0% -4.2% CBOT meal 426.90 1.20 0.3% 1.5% CBOT soyoil 42.58 0.26 0.6% -13.4% CBOT wheat 628.25 -6.75 -1.1% -19.2% CBOT rice 1506.00 4.50 0.3% 1.3% EU wheat 184.00 0.75 0.4% -26.5% US crude 106.62 0.51 0.5% 16.1% Dow Jones 15,459 40 0.3% 18.0% Gold 1321.86 -13.93 -1.0% -21.1% Euro/dollar 1.3258 -0.0041 -0.3% 0.5% Dollar Index 81.7840 0.4510 0.6% 2.5% Baltic Freight 1007 11 1.1% 44.1%
(Additional reporting by Julie Ingwersen and Sam Nelson, Editing by Andrew Hay)