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Natural Gas, Cocoa Pop: Market Bits

Wheat for May delivery tumbled 1.9% to $7.38 ½ a bushel.

"Wheat is actually being hit hard because of the forecasts," said MaxYield Cooperative Grain Solutions Team Leader Karl Setzer. Weather forecasters are predicting widespread rains on some of the driest regions of the Plains, many of which are wheat-producing regions. "As a result, we are seeing risk premium pulled back out of the futures market on wheat."

In addition, Russia and Ukraine's wheat crop are expected to be much larger than last year, Setzer said. Russia has decided to re-enter the export market after banning exports since last August as they conserved the grain during their own wheat drought.

"Australian officials are also talking of not only a better wheat crop than a year ago, but the largest one in history. The global market is in little danger of running out of wheat."

Wheat was sinking with other commodities, such as palladium, Brent crude oil, soybeans and corn on profit-taking -- instigated by Goldman Sachs' announcement that it's abandoning its long positions in a basket of commodities, the analyst said. "Some of the longs in the commodities were established $2 to $4 ago, and speculators are finally taking this off the table," Setzer explained.

Crop nutrient company Mosaic (MOS) was falling 2.3% to $75.05, while peer Agrium (AGU) was losing 0.5% to $88.42. Farm equipment maker Deere (DE) was flat at $93.63.

Food companies General Mills (GIS) and Kellogg (K) were rising 0.4% to $36.75 and $55.08, respectively. Meanwhile, restaurant McDonald's (MCD) was down 0.2% to $76.76, while its competitor Wendy's Arby's (WEN) was falling 1% to $4.76.

(Published at 10:42)

The British pound was rallying against other major currencies Thursday morning on strong economic data.
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