After trading weakly Sunday night, the grain markets turned upward Monday morning. Nearby corn futures were almost surely boosted by talk of slow farmer selling, tightening spot markets and the weekly Export Inspections report. The latter stated the latest figure at 14.144 million pounds, whereas traders were reportedly expecting something in the 6.0-8.0 million pound range. The nearby strength seemed to pull new crop prices higher despite improved weather forecasts. July futures surged 10.5 cents to $6.655/bushel late Monday morning, while December rose 2.75 cents to $5.3525.
Soybean traders seemingly sold futures slightly in response to the weekly Export Inspections report, since the result fell modestly below the low forecasts posted beforehand. Expectations for a quick finish to spring 2013 plantings probably weighed upon the complex as well. Firm soyoil prices mitigated the downward action, because palm oil strength in the Asian markets spilled over into other vegetable oil quotes. July soybean futures fell 8.25 cents to $15.825/bushel just before lunchtime Monday, while July soyoil climbed 0.32 cents to 48.80 cents/pound, but July soybean meal slipped $1.3 to $449.4/ton.
The weekly Export Inspections report seemingly offered little support for bullish traders, since the result, at 21.592 million bushels essentially matched the midpoint of the forecast range (between 18.0 and 25.0 million pounds). And while the latest news and weather have tended to weigh upon golden grain values, traders apparently pushed wheat futures upward in concert with corn. Some reportedly thought the market was oversold in the wake of recent losses. July CBOT wheat gained 2.75 cents to $6.835/bushel around midsession Monday, while July KCBT wheat jumped 5.5 cents to $7.17, and July MGE futures added 3.75 cents to $8.0775.
Seasonal pressure continued weighing upon the cattle and beef complex last week, with many in the industry expecting much more of the same during the days and weeks just ahead. However, CME live cattle futures were narrowly higher in Monday morning trading, thereby suggesting few are willing to make a stand on either side of the market at this juncture. August cattle edged up 0.02 cents to 118.35 cents/pound as the lunch hour loomed Monday, while December lifted 0.12 cents to 124.70. August feeder cattle futures rallied 0.20 cents to 143.60 cents/pound, but November dipped 0.02 cents to 149.77.
The June hog contract expired on a very strong note last Friday as traders anticipated a seasonal peak later this month. In contrast, the summer and fall contracts slipped as traders started thinking about the downside of the mid-June price peak. However, the discounts now built into those contracts give them room to rise if/when cash prices continue climbing or remain firm. The July hog future advanced 0.02 cents to 98.05 cents/pound late Monday morning, whereas December was unchanged at 81.65.