By Kirk Maltais
--Wheat for March delivery fell 0.6% to $5.77 3/4 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade on Wednesday, with traders selling off the 17-month intraday high reached in the morning.
--Soybeans for March delivery lost 0.3% to $9.13 3/4 a bushel.
--Corn for March delivery rose 0.3% to $3.88 3/4 a bushel.
Profits Taken: Wheat futures surged above $5.92 a bushel on global supply concerns, prompting traders to lock in profits. "We have no fundamental reason why it broke," said Terry Reilly of Futures International. Temperatures are well above normal in the Black Sea region, melting snow cover and leaving the wheat vulnerable to any cold wave that might move through the area.
Soggy: Much like last year, soils are getting waterlogged in the Midwest, which could signal another tough year for spring planting, said Arlan Suderman of INTL FCStone. "Soils are saturated across the Midwest, with the northern Midwest featuring a heavy snow pack containing more than 4" of rainfall equivalent," Mr. Suderman said.
Soy-nami: Brazil's record harvest of soybeans is expected to hit the market in the next two to three weeks, keeping U.S. futures prices depressed, said British research firm Marex Spectron. At the moment, soybean supplies are outpacing demand, and Asian purchases have been lower than expected. "We continue to believe that one of the reasons behind the elevated supply is the rush to release beans from inventory holdings across the supply chain" before the Brazilian harvest arrives, Marex said.
Reading the Tea Leaves: The U.S.-China trade deal, signed last week, caused some consternation in the futures market over Beijing's declaration that it would make its U.S. purchases depending on need and global market conditions. Bob Maltsbarger of IHS Markit said the concerns are likely overstated. Soybean harvests in the U.S. and Brazil, the two biggest producers of the oilseed, occur at different times of the year, allowing the caveat of "market conditions," Mr. Maltsbarger said. China just wants to ensure it's getting the best price, he said. "It would almost be ridiculous for them not to have something like that" in the deal, he said.
--The EIA releases its weekly update on ethanol production and inventories at 11 a.m. ET Thursday.
--The USDA will release its latest weekly export sales numbers at 8:30 a.m. ET Friday.
--The CFTC releases its weekly commitment of traders report at 3:30 p.m. ET Friday.
Write to Kirk Maltais at firstname.lastname@example.org