Ag markets diverged somewhat Thursday morning

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The export data boosted corn futures Thursday morning. The ag industry is clearly expected huge fall corn production, but traders sometimes forget that demand is also quite strong. They were reminded of that fact by the weekly USDA Export Sales report, which stated corn commitments above industry forecasts. That’s a big reason for subsequent gains. September corn bounced 2.25 cents to $3.6025/bushel around midsession Thursday, while December gained 2.0 to $3.7175.

Beans and meal also responded well to the export news. The Export Sales data seemed less than supportive of soybean futures, but new crop bean sales topped forecasts. Nevertheless, meal futures rallied in concert with bean prices, whereas soyoil continued suffering from the global vegoil glut. Crude oil weakness may also has sparked sales. September soybean futures surged 10.5 cents to $10.90/bushel late Thursday morning, while November futures climbed 6.5 cents to $10.5325. September soyoil fell 0.42 cents to 33.56 cents/pound, whereas September soymeal jumped $10.7 to $379.4/ton.

The wheat markets are mixed to higher. Wednesday night announcements of purchase tenders, as well as confirmation of E.U. production problems and a weak Indian monsoon, supported wheat futures this morning. Conversely, good Australian and Kazakh production prospects limited bullish moves. Prices are mostly higher at midday. September CBOT wheat rose 6.0 cents to $5.34/bushel in late Thursday morning action, while September KC wheat edged up 1.25 cents to $6.0525/bushel, but September MWE wheat slid 1.0 to $6.035.

Cattle futures were quite mixed at midday Wednesday. News of big Nebraska losses sent cattle futures sharply lower Wednesday. However, cattlemen in the southern Plains apparently refused to take the lower money, which may mean they’ll be able extract higher payments from packers today or tomorrow. On the other hand, beef prices are weak, thereby encouraging few. October live cattle futures slipped 0.17 cents to 146.37 just before lunchtime Thursday, while December futures rallied 0.12 to 148.87 cents/pound. Meanwhile, September feeder futures dropped 0.87 cents to 212.67 cents/pound and November futures tumbled 0.85 to 211.15.

The hog market resumed its recent breakdown. Cash hog and wholesale pork values continued their slow motion crash Wednesday. Country prices fell farther today, but pork cutout bounced. The latter apparently did little to slow the resulting dive in CME hog futures. October hogs plummeted 3.0 cents to 94.40 cents/pound late Thursday morning, while December plunged 2.70 cents to 85.50.

The export data disappointed cotton traders. Today’s USDA Export Sales report stated cotton sales at 176,400 bales, which represented a 30% weekly decline. That result, as well as the idea that the recent price breakdown hasn’t spurred stronger exports, seemed to reverse overnight gains. December cotton sank 0.22 cents to 64.50 shortly after noon (EDT) Thursday, while March futures slumped 0.21 cents to 65.28.


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