It had to come, a crack at a well-known investment bank for putting the grumps into commodity markets last week – only for meteorological fears this week to send crops back up again.
"It appears that Goldman Sachs, prior to their [sell] recommendations, failed to speak to the weather office," David Sheppard, managing director at UK grain merchant Gleadell, said.
To be fair, Goldman's advice was aimed at metals and oil, rather than agricultural commodities, of which many are still lower than then. And the bank did highlight the potential for weather setbacks.
Still, it does highlight how fast the investment climate can switch in crop markets, when a weather market takes hold.
And weather issues continued to take a grip of grain prices on Thursday, sending
The May lot failed – just – to record its first $8-a-bushel close of the month, ending at $7.99 ½ a bushel.
"Weather forecast is still dry for southern hard red winter wheat areas," Darrell Holaday at Country Futures said.
The forecasts were evident in a 1.4% rise to $9.32 ½ a bushel for Kansas-traded hard red winter wheat, with the better-traded July lot up 1.3% at $9.43 a bushel.
Minneapolis spring wheat for May ended 1.4% higher at $9.51 ½ a bushel, gaining a little ground on the July contract which gained 1.3% to $9.60 ¾ a bushel.
The forecasts of drier weather for
"This feature, if it does develop, is a major development," the service added, in favouring cooler-than-normal temperatures across the country.
"It is too early to know for certain if this block feature is real. But if it is, the chances of seeing a drier and warmer May are not good."
Corn managed a 1.5% rise to $6.65 ½ a bushel for new crop December delivery, with the best-traded, old crop July contract adding 0.5% to $7.44 ½ a bushel, supported by weekly US export data which, at 857,285 tonnes were respectable, if towards the bottom end of expectations.
The May lot gained 0.6% to $7.37 ¼ a bushel.
Soybeans for July added 1.5% to $13.89 ¾ a bushel.
December cotton jumped 2.6% to 132.14 cents a pound in New York.
Indeed, it has to be said that the default position for commodities was up, with good corporate results from the likes of Apple and General Electric encouraging a bit of risk taking.
Investors drove Wall Street's Dow Jones shares index to a 33-month high.
And New York raw
Jurgens Bauer at PitGuru, who has been bullish, called time, noting the "surprise" delivery of 1,601 contracts against the expiring May lot.
"I think the rally is over done here," he said, adding that he was "looking to buy, but waiting for a dip to ease the overbought indicators".
Also on a downer were European grains, which got on the wrong side of dollar weakness, despite EU wheat sales of 281,000 tonnes this week showing an improvement in demand if not to heady levels of last month.
Total exports for 2010-11, as measured by export licences, have hit 16.2m tonnes, up 12.5% year on year.
Paris wheat for May ended 0.6% lower at E252.25 a tonne, while London wheat for the same month tumbled 3.5% from its record high to end at £210.00 a tonne, a fall blamed in part on profit-taking.
Technical factors also seem to have played a part, with co-operative Openfield attributing the contract's run-up this week in part "to shorts having to buy back their position if they are unable to tender wheat. The first tender day is May 3".
"Perhaps now we have some realisation that the UK has run out of wheat and the supply and demand numbers are coming home to roost," Openfield added.