By Madeleine van Niekerk

A softer rand and firmer Chicago Board of Trade (CBoT) numbers buoyed local maize prices marginally higher on Friday.

“US parity moves were up and we closed higher than where we opened. Some buyers entered the market due to the belief that crops are going to be smaller than previously expected. The softer rand also buoyed grain prices higher‚” a local trader said.

The white maize July 2013 contract added R38.80 to close at R2‚394.80 per ton and the white maize September 2013 contract lifted R30 to R2‚420 per ton.

The yellow maize July 2013 contract climbed R39 to close at R2‚335 per ton and the yellow maize September 2013 contract closed R36 higher at R2‚356 per ton.

The wheat contract for July 2013 gained R39 to R3‚549 per ton and the wheat contract for September 2013 was up R35 to R3‚525 per ton.

US corn futures ended higher‚ reversing early losses as concern about tight supplies overshadowed smaller than expected weekly export sales. CBoT May corn gained 0.5 US cents‚ or 0.1%‚ to $7.33 a bushel‚ Dow Jones Newswires reported.

US wheat futures finished lower‚ pressured by weak export sales and traders taking profits from recent gains.

May wheat futures dropped 7.25c‚ or 1%‚ to $7.2875 a bushel at the Chicago Board of Trade. Kansas City Board of Trade May wheat dropped 5.75c‚ or 0.8%‚ to $7.6050 a bushel.

MGEX May wheat finished down 6.75c‚ or 0.8%‚ at $8.0275 a bushel.