Soybean futures prices soared again Thursday on the Chicago Board of Trade amid deepening concern over dryness in the Midwest. Corn futures also were higher, while wheat was lower.
On other markets, precious metals advanced strongly, energy futures were mostly higher, livestock was mixed and cotton was sharply higher.
"The weather keeps driving corn and soyeans higher, especially the new crop," said Victor Lespinasse, a trader with Dean Witter Reynolds. With the exception of Tuesday, when a forecast of showers depressed soybean futures, bean contracts had posted impressive gains for the past week. The November contract gained 18 cents a bushel on Thursday and a total of 60 cents a bushel in the past week.
The nearby corn and bean contracts had more modest gains, partly because the weather impact was not as great and partly because of government action that could bring more of the commodities to market. While corn futures posted healthy increases, they were more restrained than soybeans because the crop wasn't as vulnerable right now and recent surveys showed it in good to excellent condition.