Talk of improved weather depressed corn and beans Monday. Recent dryness in the U.S. (and forecasts for more of the same) have sped the domestic corn harvest, while South American planting weather has improved. Those developments apparently depressed crop prices to start the week. The Export Inspections report also disappointed corn traders. December corn futures sank 3.25 cents at $3.735/bushel in late Monday trading, while May lost 3.25 to $3.9475.
The soy complex proved surprisingly weak. As in the corn market, discussions of dryer harvest weather in the U.S. and wetter planting weather in Brazil undermined the bean and product markets Sunday night. The Export Inspections report stated the bean figure far above expectations, but the news did little to support beans. Wire service reports cited cash weakness. January soybean futures dove 19.5 cents to $10.2975/bushel at their Monday close, while December soyoil plunged 0.77 cents to 34.03 cents/pound, and December tumbled $16.3 to $372.7/ton.
Talk of reduced Black Sea production seemingly supported the wheat markets. Weakness spilling over from the corn and bean pits depressed wheat price Sunday night, but futures posted an impressive Monday bounce. Wire service reports pointed to fund short-covering, but we suspect late talk of sizeable cuts in Black Sea production prospects also encouraged buying. December CBOT wheat climbed 5.75 cents to $5.3825/bushel late Monday afternoon, while December KC wheat rose 3.75 cent to $5.975/bushel, and December MWE wheat rallied 2.75 to $5.77.
Beef firmness may have sparked cattle gains. Both the cash cattle and wholesale beef markets ended last week poorly. Trader expectations for more of the same probably caused today’s weak opening. However, the midday beef report stated cutouts as being quite firm, thereby seeming to trigger the subsequent CME surge. December live cattle futures jumped 1.00 cent to 167.05 cents/pound at Monday’s CME settlement, while April futures added 0.20 to 165.80. Meanwhile, January feeder cattle futures leapt 1.32 cents to 229.80 cents/pound, and March feeders surged 1.17 to 226.92.
Talk of short-term stability apparently encouraged hog bulls. Cash hog prices were called steady again this morning, although midsession pork quotes declined moderately. Nevertheless, CME swine futures rallied, possibly due to ideas that demand for hogs and pork is improving in the wake of recent losses. December hog futures advanced 0.82 cents to 88.85 cents/pound as Monday’s pit session ended, while April hogs lifted 0.55 to 89.70.
Cotton posted a mixed Monday performance. The cotton market again suffered from a lack of news today. Futures rebounded from Sunday night losses despite persistent soy weakness and unhelpful shifts in the financial markets (i.e. weak equity indexes, firm U.S. dollar). One has to suspect traders were rolling longs out of December and into 2015 futures, which explain their divergence. December cotton futures ended Monday having dipped 0.20 cents to 64.25 cents/pound, while March futures gained 0.35 cents to 63.27.