Corn futures likely suffered from profit-taking Wednesday morning. After reacting strongly to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula Monday and Tuesday, corn futures stalled this morning. The midsession decline was probably triggered by the concurrent drop in soybean prices, with traders likely taking profits on old longs. May corn slid 1.25 cents to $4.83/bushel late Wednesday morning, while December dropped 4.25 to $4.8225.
The soy complex suffered from Chinese news. The soy complex slipped Tuesday night, then turned decidedly lower in early Wednesday action. The drop was spurred by USDA news that Chinese buyers had cancelled soybean purchases of 245,000 tonnes. Although the industry has been anticipating such events, they still sold rather aggressively when presented with the news. May soybeans fell 13.0 cents to $14.10/bushel around midsession Wednesday, while May soyoil sank 0.21 cents to 43.50 cents/pound, and May soymeal tumbled $5.8 to $443.9/ton.
The wheat markets held up rather well to the general decline. Concurrent soybean and corn losses very likely exerted considerable downward pressure upon the wheat markets this morning. However, the possibility of disruptions to Black Sea supplies and potential freeze damage done to U.S. winter wheat apparently limited the bearish reaction in the various pits. May CBOT wheat futures edged 0.5 cent lower to $6.43/bushel in late Wednesday morning action, while May KCBT wheat futures gained 0.25 cent to $7.0975, and May MWE futures rose 2.0 to $6.875.
Cattle futures seemingly followed the hog markets lower. The short-term outlook for cattle futures still seems rather promising, especially with nearby futures remaining at sizeable discounts to cash quotes. Rising wholesale prices also quite supportive. However, futures turned decidedly lower this morning, which seemingly reflected the topping action occurring in hog futures. April cattle futures plunged 2.57 cents to 143.05 cents/pound in early Wednesday action, while August dove 2.45 cents to 132.25. Meanwhile, April feeder cattle tumbled 2.52 cents to 171.82 cents/pound, and August plummeted 2.72 to 174.12.
Hog futures seemed to reach a short-term top. Anticipation of tightening hog and pork supplies during spring and summer have recently powered hog futures to stunning highs. Panicked short-covering probably exaggerated the move. However, reality seemed to set in after futures reached limit-it up levels this morning, with prices turning sharply lower by late morning. April hogs crashed 1.87 cents to 109.80 cents/pound just before lunchtime Wednesday, while June was still up 0.67 at 116.42.