Cattle diverged from general ag market weakness Monday

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Weather news continued depressing crop futures Monday. The corn market remained under pressure early this week after the latest forecasts indicated current heat will be followed by cooler and milder conditions through late July. Thus, a large fall harvest seems virtually assured. The weekly Export Inspections report was neutral. September corn settled 7.25 cents lower at $3.64/bushel Monday, while December lost 6.5 cents to $3.72.

The soy complex traded rather mixed. As in the corn market, forecasts for favorable weather through late July depressed new-crop soybean and product prices. However, announcements of sizeable bean and meal sales this morning apparently supported old-crop futures. August soybean futures slipped 1.0 cent to $11.7575/bushel in late Monday action, while November futures tumbled 13.75 cents to $10.715. August soyoil slumped 0.43 cents to 36.14 cents/pound but August soymeal added $0.4 to $380.7/ton.

Monday’s Export Inspections data may have supported the wheat markets. Prospects for fine midsummer weather also seem to spur selling of wheat futures Monday. Still, one has to suspect prices would have fallen even lower if not for the uncertainty surrounding the Black Sea situation and the supportive result on the midmorning Export Sales report. September CBOT wheat dipped 2.25 cents to $5.30/bushel at its Monday settlement, while September KC wheat slid 5.75 cents to $6.28/bushel, and September MWE wheat sagged 7.0 cents to $6.2325.

Wholesale strength boosted CME cattle. Beef prices dove last Friday, but CME cattle futures began this week strongly. That seemingly reflected a big midday bounce, as well as renewed confidence about short-term cash price prospects. August live cattle jumped 1.33 cents to 152.95 cents/pound as Monday’s CME session ended, while December climbed 0.80 cents to 155.35. Meanwhile, August feeders soared 1.38 cents to 213.02 cents/pound, and October leapt 1.35 to 213.90.

Slumping pork quotes undercut hog futures. CME hog traders apparently believe cash prices hit their summer peak last week, especially after the CME cash index suffered a surprisingly large drop last Friday. Bears were further discouraged by a substantial setback in pork prices at midsession. August hog futures plunged 1.97 cents to 125.10 cents/pound closing Monday action, while December edged up 0.30 cents to 103.90.

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