Bloomberg News

South African Corn Falls Most in Month as Rainfall More Likely

November 16, 2012

South African corn declined the most in a month on speculation the weather in the main growing regions will improve. Soybeans dropped the most in more than seven weeks.

White corn for delivery in December, the most active contract, fell 1.7 percent to 2,434 rand a metric ton by the midday close in Johannesburg, the most since Oct. 15. The yellow variety dropped 1.2 percent to 2,494 rand a ton. Soybeans for delivery in December, declined 1.9 percent to 5,285 rand a ton, the most since Sept. 26.

“The weather outlook for next week is looking better, that is why prices are down a bit today,” Andrew Fletcher, an independent trader, said by phone from Kroonstad in the north of South Africa’s Free State province. Farmers need rain to prepare the ground before planting next season’s crop.

The province, which produces 40 percent of the nation’s corn, is partly cloudy and hot with isolated thundershowers today. It is forecast to be sunny tomorrow and has a 17 percent chance of rain on Nov. 18, the South African Weather Service said on its website. On Nov. 21 and Nov. 22, there is an 18 percent to 64 percent chance of rain, with an 11 percent chance of moderate rain on Nov. 22,

South Africa is the continent’s largest corn producer. Meal made from white corn is one of the country’s staple foods and the yellow variety is mainly used as animal feed.

Wheat for delivery in December declined 0.8 percent to 3,677 rand a ton.

To contact the reporter on this story: Tshepiso Mokhema in Johannesburg at tmokhema@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Antony Sguazzin at asguazzin@bloomberg.net


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