Ag markets were mixed Monday night

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Corn futures seemed to fail at technical resistance Monday night. After rallying the past two sessions, corn futures began today’s trading bumping up against chart resistance associated with its various moving averages. Thus, with soybeans also sliding, it wasn’t surprising to see yellow grain prices under pressure. March corn futures slipped 0.5 cent to $4.2725/bushel early Tuesday morning, while May lost 0.25 cent to $4.355/bushel.

The soy complex moved mostly lower overnight. There was some talk of a forthcoming heat wave over Argentine soybean fields, which probably provided early support for the CBOT’s soy complex. However, bulls proved unable to sustain the rise, with the subsequent drop carrying the most-active March future back below its 200-day moving average and apparently attracting a great deal of technical selling. March soybeans fell 7.25 cents at $12.695/bushel in pre-dawn Tuesday trading, while March soyoil dropped 0.42 cents to 37.70 cents/pound, and March soymeal slumped $0.5 to $413.3/ton.

The wheat markets slipped despite the persistently frigid weather. Worry that U.S. wheat fields are being damaged by the current outbreak of polar temperatures has recently boosted futures prices. However, the markets followed soybeans lower overnight, possibly due to forecasts for a warming trend and rain later this week. March CBOT wheat futures dipped 2.25 cents to $6.035/bushel in early Tuesday action, while March KCBT wheat futures dipped 1.75 cents to $6.4225, and March MWE futures sagged 1.0 to $6.295.

Surging wholesale prices are still supporting cattle futures. Although country cattle prices have been strong for weeks, limited beef gains have tended to limit rallies at the CME. That appears to be changing, since beef values rose strong again last night, which in turn seemed to prompt fresh Chicago buying. February cattle futures rallied 0.20 cents to 137.02 cents/pound as Tuesday dawned over Chicago, while April futures added 0.12 to 137.05. Meanwhile, March feeder cattle futures advanced 0.40 cents to 168.50 cents/pound, and May edged up 0.10 to 169.82.

Hog traders seem rather discounted at this point. Hog futures failed to break out to the upside last Friday, then couldn’t top moving average resistance yesterday. Traders may be reacting to those failures at this point, since nearby futures are weak this morning despite generally strong cash prices and flat wholesale quotes Monday afternoon. February hogs sank 0.45 cents to 86.17 cents/pound early Tuesday morning, while June tumbled 0.30 to 100.90.

Technical buying seemed to boost cotton futures in early trading. Nearby March cotton rallied nicely Monday, but ended the day below resistance associated with its 10-day moving average. Fund buying may have sparked the follow-through rise last night, with the penetration of that resistance exaggerating the move. However, it faces another band of resistance around early highs. March cotton jumped 1.17 cents to 84.80 cents/pound just after sunrise Tuesday, while July cotton ran up 0.88 cents to 84.36.


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