Soybeans drop as weather boosts crop prospects

Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — Soybeans dropped as improving weather across the Midwest boosted the outlook for this year's crop.

November soybeans fell 12.75 cents, or 1 percent, to $12.855 a bushel Monday.

Cold, wet weather forced farmers to delay their soybean planting this spring, keeping prices for the crop higher over the past two months. As the weather improves, the chances of a good crop this year increase.

"We are seeing just perfect weather and we expect to see that continue across the Midwest at least for the next couple of weeks," said Sterling Smith, a commodities analyst at Citigroup. "That is working to keep the beans under pressure."

In other trading of agricultural products, corn for December rose 5.5 cents, or 1 percent, to $5.3850 a bushel. The actively traded July contract for wheat was little changed at $6.8050.

Metal prices fell, led by palladium and platinum.

Palladium for September delivery fell $13.85, or 1.9 percent, to $717.85 an ounce. Platinum for July delivery dropped $12.60, or 0.9 percent, to $1,434.80 an ounce.

Gold for August fell $4.50, or 0.3 percent, $1,383.10 an ounce. Silver for July delivery fell 19.6 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $21.7580 an ounce. Copper for the same month dropped 0.4 cents, or 0.1 percent, to $3.1975 per pound.

The price of oil fell slightly after it climbed to a high for the year Monday, as the market waits to see the results of this week's Federal Reserve policy meeting.

Benchmark oil for July delivery fell 8 cents to finish at $97.77 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Earlier, crude rose to $98.74, the highest level since mid-September.

Wholesale gasoline fell 4 cents, or 1.4 percent, to $2.8561 a gallon. Heating oil fell 1.2 cents to $2.9503 a gallon. Natural gas increased 14 cents to $3.8750 per 1,000 cubic feet.

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