GRAIN HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

Features Dow Jones Newswires

TOP STORIES:

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Grain, Soybean Futures End Week With a Bounce

Grain and soybean futures turned higher on Friday, bolstered by a wave of speculative interest.

Mounting concerns about excessively dry weather in Argentina, a threat to the country's growing corn and soybean crops, sparking buying.

CBOT December corn futures rose 0.9% to $3.44 3/4 a bushel, while January soybean contracts climbed 0.9% to $9.94 1/4 a bushel. December wheat gained 1.3% to $4.14 1/2 a bushel.

Bayer Gets CFIUS Clearance for Monsanto Deal

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Bayer AG (BAYN.XE) said on Friday that the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S., or CFIUS, has no national security concerns related to the German company's planned takeover of Monsanto Co. (MON). The companies will continue to cooperate with regulatory authorities to complete the transaction in early 2018, Bayer said.

Blue Apron Soars on CEO Swap -- Market Talk

11:19 ET - Blue Apron up 7.7% on news the meal-kit company is replacing its chief executive with current CFO Brad Dickerson. Outgoing CEO Matthew B. Salzberg, who co-founded the company five years ago, remains as executive chairman. Salzberg is the second Blue Apron founder to take a reduced role at the company since its stock market debut. Blue Apron's stock has dropped roughly 70% since it began trading at about $10 a share, making it one of the worst IPO performances of the year. Today's gains are the company's biggest since July, but shares are at $3.20. (heather.haddon@wsj.com; @heatherhaddon)

STORIES OF INTEREST:

U.S. Soybean Crush Rises in October -- Market Talk

1506 ET - U.S. soybean processors crushed 176M bushels of oilseed in October, up from 145M in September and steady with a year earlier, according to the USDA. Stocks of soybean oil at the end of October fell to 1.3B pounds from 1.4B a month earlier, also below the same time last year. (benjamin.parkin@wsj.com; @b_parkyn)

Brazil Soybean Planting Approaching Its End -- Market Talk

1453 ET - Brazilian soybean farmers are almost done with their planting tasks for the 2017-2018 season, having finished 92% of the work as of Nov 30, according to agricultural consultancy AgRural. That's ahead of the 90% finished on the same date a year ago and the 87% average for the past five years, the group said. Farmers were able to make up for early delays in planting related to a lack of precipitation during October thanks to steady rain in November, said AgRural, which has estimated a crop of 110.2 million metric sons for the season. The consultancy will update its forecast for the crop next week. (jeffrey.lewis@wsj.com)

THE MARKETS:

Cattle Futures Tumble as Funds Sour on Beef

Cattle futures ended the week sharply lower as hedge funds and other speculative investors unwound optimistic bets.

Futures traders spent much of the week anticipating higher cash prices for physical cattle. But higher cash prices did little to stem the selling in the futures market.

December live cattle futures fell 2.2%, to $1.17225 a pound, at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, with a number of contracts close to or at their lower daily limits. Feeder cattle futures were also sharply lower.

Hog futures rose, with the CME December lean hog contracts 1.6% higher, at 65.275 cents a pound.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

December 01, 2017 17:34 ET (22:34 GMT)