Weather forecasts extended Wednesday crop market weakness. Grain and soy futures reacted poorly to the weekly USDA Crop Progress report. Although the ratings for corn and soybeans matched expectations, traders apparently took a dim view of the results. Moreover, the latest weather forecasts suggest a significant chance of rainfall late next week, which could improve fall harvests and depress prices. September corn dropped 5.5 cents to $4.925/bushel around midsession Wednesday, while December fell 3.5 cents to $4.7175.
The soy complex also fell in reaction to the weather news. The weekly Crop Progress report lowered the condition rating for the current soybean crop 4%, thereby matching industry expectations. Overnight losses suggested underlying weakness. That became even more apparent when the weather outlook added a chance of Corn Belt rainfall next week. September soybeans plunged 40.0 cents to $13.955/bushel by late Wednesday morning, while November beans dove 34.5 to $13.3225. September soyoil sank 0.46 cents to 43.36 cents/pound, and September soymeal plummeted $14.1 to $471.3/ton.
The wheat markets also moved mostly lower Wednesday morning. As one would expect, wheat futures followed corn and soybeans lower in early trading. Rapid harvest progress indicated on the Crop Progress report probably added to the downward pressure. Conversely, one might argue that forecasts for rain next week might boost wheat prices for that region. In fact, talk that storms had damaged the Manitoba wheat crop may have powered the September Minneapolis contract upward later in the morning. September CBOT wheat sank 6.25 cents to $6.3025/bushel just before lunchtime Wednesday, while September KCBT wheat slipped 0.25 cent to $6.965, but September MGE futures jumped 13.75 cents to $7.175.
Cattle futures continued sagging Wednesday morning. After proving surprisingly weak Tuesday afternoon, the cattle market kept sliding in early Wednesday trading. An unexpected drop in select beef cutout probably played a big role in the drop, since traders are generally expecting seasonal strength during the days and weeks just ahead. October cattle futures slid 0.45 cents to 125.75 cents/pound in late Wednesday morning trading, while December tumbled 0.62 cents to 129.47. September feeder cattle declined 0.82 cents to 156.35 cents/pound, while November lost 0.77 to 159.12.
Anticipation of tighter short-term supplies boosted hog futures Wednesday. Cash and wholesale prices proved surprisingly strong Tuesday afternoon. This morning’s Iowa-Southern Minnesota report also stated hog weights below last week, thereby implying heat-stress is hampering hog performance and tightening short-term supplies. October hog futures surged 0.87 cents to 88.87 cents/pound in midday trading Wednesday, while December rallied 0.62 cents to 85.60.