Wheat futures prices slumped Thursday on the Chicago Board of Trade, with the market apparently beginning to feel a threat from the upcoming harvest.
The contract for delivery in May took a beating, down as much as a dime a bushel before the losses were trimmed slightly.
Traders are beginning to look ahead to the potential size of the new crop and what this will mean for prices, said Dale Durchholz, an analyst in Chicago for G. H. Miller & Co.
“Just yesterday we had some new crop wheat received in Corpus Christi (Texas) and people probably woke up to the fact that the harvest is just around the corner,” he said.
Also, he said that some wheat producers who have stocks not tied up in government programs may be starting to sell now rather than waiting “for the new crop when bids may be significantly lower.”
If farmers hold on to their old crop, there could be storage problems coming up, he said. “It may end up with some distress selling.”
Soybeans for delivery in the nearby months moved higher, staging a minor recovery from recent setbacks.