Ag markets ended Monday on a decidedly mixed note

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Corn futures seemed to post a technical bounce Monday. The ag markets started this week rather poorly as forecasts for favorable spring weather continued weighing on prices. The weekly Export Inspections report didn’t seem very supportive, but nearby corn futures bounced from early lows. Beans led the rebound, but it apparently had a technical component as well. July corn settled 0.25 cent lower at $4.655/bushel Monday, while December bounced 1.0 cent to $4.585.

The Export Inspections report boosted nearby soy prices. Talk that current U.S. weather is enabling farmers to get soybeans planted in a very timely manner dragged new-crop CBOT soy futures down to start the week. However, old crop bean and meal prices bounced after the weekly USDA Export Inspections report stated the latest figure above expectations. Demand remains robust. The latest Asian news indicates declining palm oil prices are still undercutting soyoil prices. July soybeans climbed 7.25 cents to $15.005/bushel at their Monday close, while July soyoil dipped 0.19 cents to 38.31 cents/pound, and July soymeal rebounded $5.8 to $506.0/ton.

Weather news continued weighing on the wheat markets. Wire service reports indicated drier weekend weather had allowed new crop spring-wheat plantings to accelerate. Other reports highlighted the lack of competitiveness of American wheat at this point, due largely to the fact that the U.S. is one of the few regions where conditions are less than ideal. July CBOT wheat futures fell 6.5 cents to $6.2075/bushel in late Monday trading, while July KCBT wheat slid 4.25 cents to $7.1875 and July MWE futures dropped 9.25 cents to $6.9725.

Cattle futures started the week in mixed fashion. Profit-taking in the wake of last week’s rally seemed to weigh on the expiring June cattle future this morning, whereas the late-2014 contracts posted moderate gains. Traders appeared uncertain about likely cash/wholesale market direction during the days and weeks just ahead. August cattle ran up 0.52 cents to 139.12 cents/pound at Monday’s settlement, while December rose 0.35 cents to 146.07. Meanwhile, August feeder cattle bounced 0.52 cents to 197.57 cents/pound, and October added 0.47 to 198.90.

CME hogs bounced from early losses. Hog futures have recently suffered persistent declines from sizeable premiums over cash as spot hog and pork values disappointed traders. The losses continued in early-Monday trading, but traders apparently became more confident as the morning passed, since futures climbed well above Friday’s levels by early afternoon. August hog futures jumped 1.15 cents to 125.95 cents/pound as pit trading ended Monday, and December rallied 0.45 to 95.25.

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