File image: Reuters

South African maize and wheat futures ended lower on Wednesday for the second day in a row‚ on the back of a bit of profit taking and the US Agricultural Department's crop stock report being expected for release later in the day.

“Maize and wheat futures positions are being squared off before the release of the report and expectations are for the US to cut its corn ending stock figure for the marketing period ending August next year. Less maize stock is expected due to a drought in the US corn and soybean area‚” said Pieter van Wyk‚ Head of Commodities at PSG in Cape Town.

The near-dated July white maize contract was down R5.00 at R2‚406 a ton and the September white maize contract shed R4.00 to R2‚433.00 a ton. December white maize lost R3.00 to R2‚488 a ton.

The near-dated July yellow maize contract shed R1.00 to R2‚358 and the September yellow maize contract lost R4.00 to R2‚388.00 a ton. The December yellow maize contract shed R5.00 to R2‚435 a ton.

The July wheat contract added R18.00 to R3‚328 a ton and the September wheat gained R10.00 to R3‚386 a ton‚ while the December wheat contract was down R4.00 at R3‚267 a ton.

Meanwhile US grain and soybean futures closed lower on Tuesday‚ pressured by positioning ahead of government reports due on Wednesday‚ Dow Jones Newswires reported. Corn futures led the declines‚ as market participants sold futures to exit long positions‚ reducing risk ahead of key government crop reports.

Investors also took some profits off the table after the recent rally in futures. Corn and soybean futures had previously rallied by 29% and 20% respectively in the last three weeks‚ due to worries about declining yield and supply potential resulting from the worst Midwest drought since 1988.

CBOT July corn dropped 14 1/4 cents‚ or 1.8%‚ to US$7.61 a bushel‚ and December corn ended down 12 1/2 cents‚ or 1.7%‚ to $7.17 1/2.

CBOT July soybeans closed 16 1/4 cents‚ or 1%‚ lower at $16.48 3/4 a bushel‚ and November soybeans ended down 9 1/4 cents‚ or 0.6%‚ at $15.38 1/2.

CBOT September wheat dropped 7 cents‚ or 0.8%‚ to $8.21 1/4‚ September KCBT wheat closed 7 1/2 cents‚ or 0.9%‚ lower to $8.22‚ and MGEX September wheat settled down 8 3/4 cents‚ or 0.9%‚ at $9.18. - I-Net Bridge