KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI, US — Pressured by profit taking and slippery export traction, winter wheat futures ended lower on March 23. But more promising export opportunities for the United States gave corn and soy complex futures a boost with the nearby soybean contract crossing the $17-per-bushel threshold for the first time since September 2012.

Analysts suggested the pressure on vegetable oil supplies from the war in Ukraine along with drought-depleted crops in South America were supporting the surge in soybean markets.

May corn added 4¾¢ to close at $7.57¾. Chicago May wheat fell 12½¢ to close at $11.05¾ a bushel. Kansas City May wheat declined 5¢ to close at $11.11½ a bushel, but later months were mixed. Minneapolis May wheat lost 6½¢ and closed at $10.89¼ a bushel; later months were mixed but mostly lower. May soybeans surged 22¼¢, closing at $17.18¾ a bushel. May soybean meal added $8.30 to close at $485.10 per ton. May soybean oil gained 1.43¢ to settle at 75.97¢ a pound; later months were mixed but mostly higher.

Pulling away from recent gains, US equity markets ended lower on March 23, pressured by rising energy prices and increasingly tight global supplies. The Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbled 448.96 points, or 1.29%, to close at 34,358.50. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index dropped 55.37 points, or 1.23%, to close at 4,456.24. The Nasdaq Composite fell 186.21 points, or 1.32%, to close at 13,922.60.

US crude oil advanced on March 23 after Russia reported significant storm damage to the Caspian pipeline, which accounts for approximately 1% of global crude supplies. The April future added $5.66 to close at $114.93 per barrel.