July corn was trading 2 1/2 cents higher late in the overnight session. China futures were up slightly overnight. Outside market forces look quiet as traders await employment news in the US this morning. Energy is weak and the dollar firm. There were no deliveries for the fifth session in a row. The weather remains a bearish force and has helped to pressure December corn this week. There seems to be plenty of rain in the Midwest forecast for the next ten days and planting progress could slow but soil conditions have improved significantly ahead of the key growing season. A long liquidation selling trend has been noticeable and China buying has occasionally supported strong gains for the old crop May and July contracts and the cash market remains very strong. May corn is near the high end of the range for the calendar year while December corn is near the low end. Since April 13th, open interest is down a whopping 146,000 contracts. May corn closed 8 1/2 cents higher yesterday, July up 3 and December down just 1 1/2 cents with a strong recovery late in the day. The old crop tightness, a very strong cash market and ideas that the USDA will need to raise exports and tighten old crop ending stocks further in next week's Supply/demand update has helped to support the nearby contracts. Omaha corn is trading 24 cents premium to the July contract as compared with -20 cents as the 3-year average. An excellent weather outlook plus the early plantings has traders inching up their yield projections for the new crop season. Net weekly export sales came in at 1.332 metric tonnes for the current marketing year and 2.14 million for the next marketing year for a total of 3.472 million tonnes. Sales of 321,000 metric tonnes are needed each week to reach the USDA forecast. Traders indicated that the combined sales for the week were at the highest weekly total since 1991. The lack of deliveries and news that Argentina will not export corn to China until more of the GMO details are worked out helped to support the nearby contracts. South Korea is tendering to buy 55,000 tonnes of corn.
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