Soybeans are trading at record prices on CBOT - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Soybeans are trading at record prices on CBOT

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DUNKERTON (KWWL) -

Soybean prices are hitting record highs as experts speculate how the drought will impact yields. It was an unprecedented day on the Chicago Board of Trade. The November soybeans futures closed at $17.32 per bushel, 41 cents higher than the previous record.

A local analyst says, depending on the weather, and depending on what is in the fields, the trade price of beans could continue rising, or it could plummet.

It's a matter of supply and demand -- the demand for beans is growing, but the crops themselves are not.

"We've had some dry years previous to this. But this is one of the worst I can remember," said farmer Mark Knudson.

Knudson stopped by the Dunkerton Co-op Tuesday afternoon to pick up a truckload of soybeans. These are beans he's already sold, at a lower price. Should he have waited, he'd be making quite a bit more -- prices for beans are at an all-time high.

"We're paying, for new crop beans, over $16. That probably is a record price," said Dunkerton Co-op grain manager Wil Manweiler.

Most farmers are not jumping to sell what's in their field -- even at a record price. Generally, they've already sold the bulk of what they expect to harvest, and they're not ready to gamble on having much more on hand come fall.

"We don't have any idea what we're going to have as a crop at this point, so myself anyway, I don't feel comfortable selling a whole lot of new crop," said Knudson.

Knudson said, he's walked through fields where the crops are knee-high with hardly any beans. Others are ankle-high, but are filled with beans. So he won't really know what harvest will be like until harvest.

"Beans are made in the month of August. And August has been cooler and we're getting some moisture now," said Knudson.

Soybean estimates are better now than last month, but still not great.

"I've heard a lot of talk, maybe, 35, 40 bushel beans. Which is quite a bit less than what we had last year with record yields around here," said Manweiler.

Knudson said, regardless of Tuesday's record prices, it's the profit from those record years that should help keep farmers afloat through the drought.

"We've seen some exceptional yields the last three, four years. The prices have been good. If there was ever a time for us to weather a storm, if we had to pick a time, I don't know how you could pick one better," said Knudson.

Knudson also mentioned, because of the advancements in hybrid beans, and corn, the crops are able to better withstand the lack of rain and heat. But until they're able irrigate every acre of land in the state, the weather will dictate what happens in the field.

Manweiler said, the value of the U.S. dollar plays a big role in determining the price of soybeans. The dollar traded lower Tuesday -- which likely encouraged more activity among international buyers.

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