GRAIN HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

Features Dow Jones Newswires

TOP STORIES:

Continue Reading Below

Corn, Soybean Futures Rise Ahead of Holiday Break

Corn and soybean futures inched higher in a quiet session ahead of the holiday break, while wheat futures slid.

Traders were mostly positioning ahead of the break, analysts said, with some traders pulling out of their bets altogether.

Corn futures for March rose 0.2%, to $3.52 a bushel, at the Chicago Board of Trade. January soybean futures rose 0.1%, to $9.49 1/2 a bushel.

STORIES OF INTEREST:

Continue Reading Below

Former Syngenta Chairman to Depart -- Market Talk

10:49 ET - Syngenta announces the departure of Michel Demare, the Swiss pesticide maker's former chairman who led its defense against a takeover attempt by rival Monsanto--and who later oversaw Syngenta's sale to China National Chemical Corp., which closed this year. Demare, who served on Syngenta's board for five years, drew some investors' fury during his repeated public rebuffs of Monsanto in 2015, though these were mostly assuaged after Syngenta agreed to a $43B all-cash sale to ChemChina early last year. As Demare leaves, Syngenta says it's adding Carl Casale to its board--a longtime Monsanto executive, who most recently headed agricultural cooperative CHS Inc. (jacob.bunge@wsj.com; @jacobbunge)

THE MARKETS:

Cattle, Hog Herds Growing Into Next Year

Commercial feedlots are fattening more cattle than expected, sparking concerns about an oversupply of beef next year.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Friday that the number of cattle placed in feedlots for fattening in November rose 14% from the same time last year to 2.1 million head. That was well above average pre-report estimate of 6% and above the high range of expectations.

Cattle futures were mostly lower in the wake of the report. December-dated live cattle contracts rose 0.2%, to $1.198 a pound, at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange on Friday, while later-month contracts fell. CME January feeder cattle futures fell 0.8%, to $1.418 a pound.

Hog futures bounced after the report. CME February lean hog contracts rose 2.1%, to 70.025 cents a pound.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

December 22, 2017 17:32 ET (22:32 GMT)