By Phil Franz-Warkentin, MarketsFarm
Winnipeg, Aug. 16 (MarketsFarm) – The ICE Futures canola market was stronger on Friday, taking some direction from Chicago Board of Trade soybeans as traders squared positions ahead of the weekend.
Speculative short-covering was a feature as fund traders took some profits on their bearish bets, according to a trader.
Solid crush margins added to the firm tone, with domestic processors still looking at some of their best margins of the past year.
While production uncertainty across the Prairies also kept some weather premiums in the market, the looming harvest tempered the upside.
A firmer tone in the Canadian dollar, which was up by about a quarter of a cent, also slowed the advances.
About 11,459 canola contracts traded on Friday, which compares with Thursday when 12,748 contracts changed hands. Spreading accounted for 3,540 of the contracts traded.
SOYBEAN futures at the Chicago Board of Trade were stronger on Friday, with positioning ahead of the weekend a feature as the market took back some of Thursday’s losses.
The United States Department of Agriculture reported a flash sale of nearly 300,000 tonnes of soybeans to unknown destinations this morning, providing some support.
However, ongoing uncertainty over Chinese trade relations kept traders on their toes, as the back-and-forth from both countries over the past week adds more confusion to the situation.
CORN was higher, seeing a technical rebound after posting sharp losses earlier in the week amid oversold price sentiment.
Ideas that the U.S. crop may not live up to Monday’s optimistic production forecast from the USDA were supportive.
WHEAT futures were steady to higher on Friday, although trade was thin and choppy.
The USDA attaché in Canada pegged the Canadian wheat crop at 32.65 million tonnes, which would be up from the 31.77 million tonnes grown the previous year. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is currently forecasting a 32.0 million tonne Canadian wheat crop. The first official Statistics Canada crop production estimate of the year will be released on Aug. 28.