Wheat futures rose the most in two weeks on renewed concern that dry weather in the U.S. Great Plains will hurt the early development of winter crops.
Growing areas in the central and southern Plains for the hard red-winter variety will get “minimal to non-existent” rainfall in the next 14 days, Chicago-based QT Weather said today in a report. About 47 percent of the U.S. wheat crop was rated good to excellent in the week ended Oct. 24, down from 62 percent a year earlier, the Department of Agriculture said yesterday.
“Wheat conditions are a little disappointing,” said Jerod Leman, a broker at Wellington Commodities in Carmel, Indiana. After storms last week, “some areas got missed, and still need a rain,” he said.
Wheat futures for December delivery climbed 13.25 cents, or 2 percent, to $6.8725 a bushel at 10:19 a.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. A close at that price would mark the biggest gain for a most-active contract since Oct. 8. Before today, the grain jumped 40 percent since the end of June after drought in Russia and Eastern Europe slashed crops.
Wheat is the fourth-biggest U.S. crop, valued at $10.6 billion in 2009, behind corn, soybeans and hay, government data show.
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