Corn futures declined from two-month highs to start this week. The concurrent bounce by the U.S. dollar may have exaggerated the weakness, but the main reason for the slide stems the weather. That is, the industry expects it to show good progress toward completing spring plantings last week and a strong finish amidst dryer weather during the days ahead. The weekly Export Inspections report also seemed a bit disappointing. July corn fell 16.25 cents to $6.50/bushel Monday, while December lost 12.5 cents to $5.46.
After stalling at rather elevated levels last week, soybean futures were probably technically vulnerable at the start of trading this week. But ideas that forthcoming conditions will expedite plantings in the short term apparently sparked CBOT losses Monday. That is, weather forecasts appear conducive to an accelerated planting pace over the short run. The weekly Export Inspections report seemingly had little market impact. July soybean futures dropped 16.5 cents to $15.1175/bushel at its Monday settlement, while July soyoil sank 0.46 cents to 48.07 cents/pound, and July soybean meal skidded $4.8 to $448.3/ton.
Wheat futures followed corn and soybeans lower Monday, with recent rains apparently affecting prices somewhat. Moisture over winter wheat areas may be improving production prospects (and depressing prices), whereas it is probably hampering efforts to complete spring wheat plantings (Minneapolis prices were relatively firm). The weekly Export Inspections report appeared quite supportive, especially since the large result, at 24.37 million bushels, refuted ideas that the recent finding of GMO wheat was disrupting exports. July CBOT wheat futures closed 6.5 cents lower, at $6.8975/bushel Monday afternoon, while July KCBT wheat dove 8.5 cents to $7.26, while July MGE futures dipped 8.25 cents to $8.115.
As expected, news of cash market weakness late Friday afternoon dragged CME live cattle futures downward to start trading this week. Traders apparently have little confidence in the summer-fall outlook either, since the August and October contracts are also trading at discounts to cash prices seen late last week. The midday beef price bounce did not seem to help the situation either. June cattle settled 0.92 cents lower at 119.20 cents/pound Monday afternoon, while December declined 0.60 to 124.42. Meanwhile, feeder futures were mixed due to competing cattle and corn influences. The August contract slid 0.20 cents to 143.42 cents/pound, whereas November edged 0.10 cents lower to 149.22.
Hog traders were apparently expecting the seasonal hog/pork rally to continue over the short run Monday morning as futures moved moderately higher. Prices accelerated upward as noon approached, which reportedly marked a reaction to rumors that Chinese buyers were shopping for U.S. pork. June hog futures jumped 1.07 cents to 99.20 cents/pound at its Monday close, while December reversed to the downside, losing 0.92 cents to 80.75.