Markets in wheat and corn markets are buoyed by a stronger U.S. economy, but they are still struggling to recover from the sharp drop in the prices of those commodities.
Wheat futures rose to $1.23/lb., or 6.7 cents/ounce, after earlier closing at $1/lb. and corn at $4.93/lb, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
That’s down from $4/lb in late February.
Corn futures also rose to a record low of $4 per bushel on Friday.
Wheat prices have recovered to $2.73/lb for the month, but are still up around 7 cents a bushel.
Corn prices are down about 10 cents a barrel since the start of the year.
But corn futures are down a bit from the record low in February, when prices were up almost 30 cents a gallon.
“Corn is in a good spot now,” said Patrick Cavanaugh, a market strategist at RBC Capital Markets.
Corn was trading up about 2 cents a pound on Friday, the highest level in nearly three months.
But the price was up about 3 cents from a week ago, after falling to an intraday low of about $1 a bushe in late March.
Corn fell again Friday as investors rushed to dump it, sending prices up another 3 cents.
“The bulls are oversold,” Cavanaugh said.
“I would expect it to remain in that price range for a while.
That would probably give us some breathing room.”
Corn prices have rallied a bit since March, when the price of corn was up more than 40 cents a ton.
But they are now up more or less the same amount as the highs seen in March.
That has helped to offset the loss in the price for wheat and is pushing prices back into a higher range.
The rise in wheat is expected to help offset the effects of the price drop in corn.
“If the bulls see that corn prices are in a tight range, then they will move up, and I think that will help to sustain a rally,” said Jeff Lautenschlager, head of commodity trading at Citi.
The market is “now in a position that is pretty solid,” Lautreschlger said.
The S&P 500 index of S&s stock indexes jumped 0.8 percent, or 2.2 percent, to 2,914.66.
The Nasdaq composite index of the companies listed on the stock exchange gained 0.3 percent, but the index fell 1.7 percent.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 23.12 points, or 0.5 percent, at 22,869.89.
The Russell 2000 index of Russell 2000 stock indexes fell 0.4 percent, after recovering from a three-week losing streak.