Soybean Oil Rises on U.S. Biodiesel Investigation

By Benjamin Parkin Features Dow Jones Newswires

Soybean oil futures closed higher on Friday after the U.S. said it would continue to investigate biodiesel imports.

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The U.S. International Trade Commission said it found reason to look into whether the U.S. biofuel industry was "materially injured" by imports from Argentina and Indonesia, countries which allegedly subsidize their producers and sell product in the U.S. below fair value.

If investigators rule in favor of U.S. trade groups who brought the case, the Commerce Department could levy tariffs on those fuels. Soybean oil prices bounced ahead of the widely anticipated decision.

"If we're not going to import biodiesel from Argentina," said Terry Reilly, senior commodity analyst at Futures International, "end users will have to turn to the U.S. biofuel industry."

Soybean oil futures for July delivery, the most actively traded contract, rose 1.2% to 32.90 cents per pound at the Chicago Board of Trade. CBOT July soybean futures closed 0.1% lower at $9.73 a bushel.

Corn and wheat, meanwhile, posted gains to end a week dominated by speculation about whether recent bouts of snow and rain would result in significant damage for this year's U.S. crop.

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CBOT July wheat closed 1% higher at $4.42 1/4 a bushel, while corn closed up 1.2% at $3.70 3/4.

Traders are waiting to see whether flooding in parts of the Midwest will mean that farmers have to replant their corn crop. The U.S. Department of Agriculture will issue an updated report on planting progress Monday afternoon.

The wet weather, however, is expected to continue in parts of the U.S. corn belt through much of next week.

Write to Benjamin Parkin at benjamin.parkin@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

May 05, 2017 16:08 ET (20:08 GMT)