Ag markets were mostly lower late Monday morning

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Black Sea stability may be undercutting crop markets. Corn futures seemed set to follow-through on last week’s late rally Sunday night, but turned downward as Monday morning passed. Heat forecast for the Corn Belt this week will probably be good for the growing crop, but the lack of open hostility between Russia and Ukraine seems to be undercutting the grain and soy complexes. September corn sank 3.75 cents to $3.62/bushel around midsession Monday, while December slumped 4.5 to $3.725.

The soy complex turned quite mixed by late Monday morning. Persistent signs of soymeal demand, particularly on last Friday’s NOPA crush report have supported that market lately, but meal turned mostly lower this morning. Oil seems to be posting a dead-cat bounce, while the nearby September bean contract is leading new crop prices slightly higher. September soybean futures surged 16.5 cents to $11.19/bushel just before lunchtime Monday, while November futures edged up 2.5 cents to $10.545. September soyoil climbed 0.16 cents to 33.03 cents/pound, and September soymeal added $3.0 to $391.3/ton.

The wheat markets sustained Sunday night losses. Wheat futures rallied late last week as the industry worried about a Russian invasion of Ukraine and a shortage of wheat coming from the Black Sea region in its wake. Little actually seemed to happen over the weekend, so traders appear to be reversing their positions this morning. September CBOT wheat slid 6.0 cents to $5.4525/bushel in late Monday morning action, while September KC wheat dipped 3.25 cents to $6.165/bushel, and September MWE wheat sagged 4.25 to $6.0775.

Cattle futures are starting the week on a firm note. The cattle market reacted well when beef packers posted firm cash bids late last week. Traders apparently still expect short-term weakness, as indicated by sizeable discounts built into CME prices. Thus, any short-term firmness often seems bullish. October live cattle futures advanced 0.57 cents to 148.32 cents/pound late Monday morning, while December futures lifted 0.32 to 151.22 cents/pound. Meanwhile, September feeder futures inched up 0.05 cents to 215.15 cents/pound and November futures rose 0.07 to 213.72.

Talk of fresh cash/wholesale weakness sent CME hogs to five-month lows. Despite trader suspicions that Labor Day demand from grocers will soon power a bounce in cash hog and pork prices, CME futures began this week’s trading poorly. That apparently reflects talk of seasonally surging hog supplies. October hogs fell 0.67 cents to 94.27 cents/pound, while December dove 1.27 cents to 87.77.

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