Ag markets were quite mixed around midsession Monday

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Corn seemed to follow wheat futures lower Monday morning. Although some farmers may have been able to rush some corn planting late last week, the advent of wet, chilly weather over the Corn Belt over the weekend is reportedly encouraging buying. Little corn is likely to get planted during the next two weeks, which suggests diminished harvest potential next fall. The Export Inspections report was rather disappointing, which may have exaggerated the bearish impact of declining wheat prices. May corn stalled at $5.065/bushel in early Monday trading, while December slipped 0.75 cent to $5.055.

The Export Inspections report looked bullish for the soy complex. The potential for planting problems is probably weighing on deferred weakness in the soy complex, since delayed corn plantings can cause acreage shifts into beans during late spring. Meanwhile, the weekly Export Inspections report showed a surprisingly larger result, thereby suggesting export demand remains quite robust. May soybeans jumped 8.75 cents to $15.0675/bushel late Monday morning, while May soyoil dropped 0.24 cents to 42.68 cents/pound, and May soymeal gained $3.9 to $494.5/ton.

Weather forecasts seem to be moving the wheat markets. Today’s Export Inspections report seemed supportive of nearby wheat futures, but only the KC market was trading higher by late morning. The fact that large portions of the Corn Belt are being blessed with rain may explain the Chicago and Minneapolis losses, whereas persistent southern Plains dryness may be supporting Kansas City. May CBOT wheat futures slid 6.25 cents to $6.94/bushel around midsession Monday, while May KCBT wheat futures inched up 0.75 cents to $7.765 and May MWE futures slumped 1.75 to $7.4575.

The COF report is boosting cattle futures. Last Friday’s monthly USDA Cattle on Feed report was viewed as supportive because March placements proved surprisingly small and pulled COF as of April 1 down nearly 1% from a year ago. Traders may also think the discounts already built into summer futures are too large. June cattle futures rallied 0.65 cents to 137.42 cents/pound just before lunchtime Monday, while December surged 1.17 cents to 142.95. Meanwhile, May feeder cattle leapt 1.57 cents to 181.57 cents/pound, and August soared 2.15 cents to 186.75.

Short-term weakness may be depressing hog futures. Lower cash prices and wholesales pork prices undercut the futures market last Friday. Industry talk has persisted in that vein to start this week, which is apparently spurring selling of premium CME futures. June hog futures dove 0.97 cents to 123.55 cents/pound late Monday morning, while December sank 0.07 to 91.20.


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