Ag markets proved rather mixed Tuesday night

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Fresh concerns about planting delays may be supporting corn futures. The expiring May future rose modestly overnight, thereby seeming to reflect firm old-crop demand. New crop futures also edged upward, which probably reflected ongoing rainfall across the Midwest and the resulting lack of planting progress this week. July corn inched up 0.5 cent to $5.0325/bushel Tuesday night, while December stalled at $4.95.

Soybeans and meal declined overnight. The Asian palm markets hit a two-week high last night, which boosted soyoil values as well. However, beans and meal quotes dipped. The reasons for the setback weren’t clear, but it may have been related to talk of an early Southeastern bean harvest and quick relief to any late-summer U.S. shortages. July soybeans slumped 3.5 cents to $14.8025/bushel just after dawn Wednesday, while July soyoil rallied 0.32 to 41.53 cents/pound, and July soymeal slid $3.2 to $481.5/ton.

The wheat markets are still feeling the results of the WASDE report. Most wheat developments seem bullish these days, with frost hitting parts of the southern Plains and rain delaying northern Plains seedings. The Black Sea situation remains volatile. Bears may believe recent rainfall across portions of the Winter Wheat Belt will boost production, but, ultimately, the markets still seem to be struggling with the bearish global forecasts indicated by last week’s WASDE report. July CBOT wheat futures sank 3.75 cents to $7.055/bushel in early Wednesday trading, while July KCBT wheat futures skidded 1.0 cent to $8.2375, and July MWE futures lost 1.0 to $7.9375.

Cattle futures hardly reacted to strong beef quotes. Cattle traders are apparently anticipating seasonal weakness across the cattle and beef complex to weigh upon prices during the days and weeks ahead. That might explain the fact that futures slipped Tuesday night despite a big jump in beef cutouts yesterday afternoon. June cattle sagged 0.05 cents to 136.95 cents/pound early Tuesday morning, while December crept up 0.07 to 144.35. Meanwhile, August feeder cattle climbed 0.32 cents to 192.00 cents/pound, and October added 0.05 cents to 192.52.

Cash strength is still supporting CME hog values. As indicated at midday Tuesday, cash hog prices rose and pork values dropped yesterday afternoon. Traders are apparently more concerned with cash market developments than with the implications of declining pork quotes at this juncture. June hogs rallied 0.25 cents to 119.85 cents/pound as Wednesday dawned over Chicago, while December gained 0.15 to 94.45.

Technicians seem to be buying cotton futures this morning. Little fresh news concerning the cotton outlook emerged Tuesday night, which seemed to open the door to technical traders. They appeared to come into the market as buyers after bears failed to significantly challenge chart support associated with the pivotal 90-cent level on the July chart. A test of overhead resistance now looks likely. July cotton jumped 0.93 cents to 91.86 cents/pound soon after sunrise Wednesday, while December cotton bounced 0.32 to 83.77.

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