File image: Reuters

South African maize and wheat prices closed the Friday session higher due to a tumble in the rand to a four—month low of R8.6863 to the greenback owing to foreigners disinvesting from SA because of local strikes.

At noon on Friday the rand was trading at R8.6374 to the dollar from R8.4952 on Thursday.

“Maize and wheat prices are higher due to the rand that has weakened by 30 to 40c in recent times. The higher maize and wheat prices are good for farmers because they get more money for their produce‚ but bad for millers‚ because millers want to buy at the lowest price possible‚” said Andries van der Walt‚ trader at Vrystaat Mielies.

“We expect the rand to weaken to R8.75 to the dollar in the short term as long as the strikes continue‚ and maize and wheat price will continue to increase due to a weaker rand‚” he added.

White maize for December delivery‚ the most active contract on the South African Futures Exchange‚ gained R12.00 to close at R2‚542 a ton. Meal made from the grain is SA’s staple food.

Yellow maize for December delivery added R4 to R2‚547 a ton. The grain is used mainly as animal feed in SA.

Wheat for December delivery added R12 to close at R3‚552 a ton.

Meanwhile in the US‚ corn and wheat futures ended mixed on Thursday. Advances in the markets were fuelled by broader-based buying across commodity asset classes amid weakness in the US dollar and ongoing concerns about US and world grain production‚ Dow Jones Newswires reported.

December wheat futures ended down 3 3/4 cents‚ or 0.4%‚ to $8.69 1/4 a bushel at the Chicago Board of Trade. Corn for December delivery rose 1/4 cent or 0.03% to $7.57 a bushel. - I-Net Bridge