Ag markets began the week rather poorly Tuesday

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Favorable weather seemed to weigh on the crop markets Tuesday. With spring corn plantings reportedly nearing completion, forecasts for persistent showers this week seem to favor increased production. When combined with ideas that the Black Sea situation won’t greatly affect crop production, the news caused a poor start to this week’s CBOT trading. July corn sank 8.25 cents to $4.6975/bushel in Tuesday action, while December lost 9.5 cents to $4.6575.

Weather news apparently depressed the soy complex as well. Although a large portion of the nation’s soybean crop likely hasn’t been planted yet, the current situation still seems to favor a sizeable crop. One also has to wonder if early-spring price trends and wetness persuaded many producers to shift more acreage to beans. The fact that new-crop prices are leading the way lower suggests such ideas were in play. July soybeans dove 26.75 cents to $14.8875/bushel at Tuesday close, while July soyoil slid 0.44 cents to 39.94 cents/pound, and July soymeal tumbled $8.4 to $494.2/ton.

Wheat markets also suffered from weather and Black Sea news. Current U.S. rainfall may be a big blessing to what’s left of the winter wheat crop. And while spring wheat plantings continue lagging, current moisture still favors a larger fall crop. Meanwhile, news out of the Ukraine suggests reduced disruptions to regional grain output. July CBOT wheat futures fell 11.5 cents to $6.41/bushel as Tuesday’s trading ended, while July KCBT wheat dropped 4.0 cents to $7.41, and July MWE futures dipped 3.0 cents to $7.225.

Cattle traders likely expect continued cash losses. Cash cattle prices fell last week despite persistent wholesale strength. CME cattle traders rather obviously expect seasonally increasing cattle supplies will keep spot values under pressure into early summer. June cattle tumbled 0.70 cents to 135.60 cents/pound late Tuesday afternoon, while December sagged 0.30 cents to 143.95. Meanwhile, August feeder cattle surged 0.65 cents to 193.50 cents/pound, and October climbed 0.77 cents to 194.87.

Hog futures ended Tuesday on a mixed note. In contrast to cattle supplies, market hog numbers usually decline through the second quarter. Traders certainly expect that to happen this year, especially with PEDV having killed so many piglets last winter. That supported some CME contracts, but fresh wholesale weakness apparently depressed others. June hog futures settled 0.35 cents lower at 116.50 cents/pound Tuesday afternoon, while December gained 0.17 to 95.30.


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