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Wheat surged the most in three months after a government report showed stockpiles were lower than expected in the U.S., the world’s biggest exporter, as demand climbed.
Inventories on Sept. 1 totaled 2.1 billion bushels, down 2 percent from a year earlier, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said. Analysts surveyed by Bloomberg expected 2.272 billion bushels. In the three months ended Aug. 31, consumption rose 27 percent from a year earlier, USDA data show. Prices had dropped 4.7 percent in the prior four sessions amid concern that demand was slowing.
The USDA “must have increased” its estimate of the amount exported and fed to livestock, Brian Hoops, the president of Midwest Market Solutions in Springfield, Missouri, said by telephone. “We’ve been beating up on the grain market this week. The uncertainty will alleviate any selling pressure.”
Wheat futures for December delivery jumped 5.5 percent to settle at $9.025 a bushel at 2 p.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade, the biggest increase since June 25. The most-active contract advanced 19 percent in the quarter.
The London-based International Grains Council said today that wheat production globally will total 657 million metric tons, down from an August forecast of 662 million tons. Global stockpiles will fall to 175 million tons, down 2.8 percent from last month’s forecast, IGC data show.
Wheat is the fourth-largest U.S. crop, valued at $14.4 billion in 2011, behind corn, soybeans and hay, government data show.
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