Soybean oil closed up 48 points on the week at 53.14 as the overall theme of the market remains bullish with tightening inventories, uncertain 2008 acreage, and strong demand that keeps market bulls in command.
Celeres lowered its Brazilian soybean production estimate to 59.1 million tonnes, off 5% from its December estimate of 62.3 million. Celeres stated higher scorn prices encouraged fewer soybean plantings. USDA lowered its estimate to 60.5 million from 62 million. Celeres now sees plantings at 21.4 million hectares, only 2.7% higher than last year. Their initial idea was for plantings to jump almost 10%.
Meteorlogix reports rainfall in Brazil has been taken out of the forecast for the Rio Grande do Sul. This new forecast would mean top soils would continue to trend drier, increasing stress to this part of the crop.
The National Oilseed Processors Association said its December soybean crush rate was 155.907 million bushels, up from the November figure of 146.748 million bushels and above the 149.162 million at the same time last year. Soybean oil stocks were reported at 2.712 billion pounds, up from the November stock figure of 2.689 billion.
Palm oil prices, which have been see-sawing after hitting an historic high of 3.420 ringgit on Monday, are still up nearly 8% this year on a supply squeeze due to widespread floods in key growing areas in December.
According to the American Soybean Association’ country director, China’s soybean imports are likely to continue growing in 2008, even as the Chinese government imposed price controls on essential commodities including edible oils.