China cancellation sparks sell-off in soybeans

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Corn futures are 5-7 cents lower at midsession. Futures have tumbled along with the soybeans on the China soybean export cancellations. Weekly corn export sales sluggish again at only 4.1 million bushels for the current marketing year. Oddly sales for 2013/14 were double the current year. December futures tested the low made earlier this week near $7.10. So far that level has held. News that EPA denied waiver requests of the ethanol mandate helped futures hold the low, but for most the announcement was not a surprise. December corn futures 7 1/4 cents lower at $7.14.

The soybean market is sharply lower in mid morning trading. January futures have traded down by about 25 cents to near $13.75. The major development is news from China. According to the China National Grain and Oils Information Center, Chinese traders have cancelled about 600,000 tonnes of U.S. soybean purchases. The source of the news is considered highly reputable. The beans would have been shipped from the U.S. soon for delivery to China in December and January. Crushing margins are poor in China considering the high prices that some of the beans carry with them from their purchases at the peak in late summer U.S. production anxiety.

Wheat futures are down hard in midsession trade. Weekly export sales came in at the low end of pre-report expectations and reports of China cancelling some purchases of U.S. soybeans have soybeans down hard as well. Making things worse, wheat futures have now broken below some important chart support points, triggering additional selling pressure on technical reasons. At midsession, CBOT December is down 16 ¼ at $8.45; KCBT December is down 16 ¾ at $8.86 ¾; MGE December is down 13 ¼ at $9.17 ½.

Live cattle futures are 5 to 25 cents lower at mid morning. Cattle futures are drifting lower ahead of this afternoon’s Cattle on Feed report. Beef prices were lower on Thursday. Some light cash trade was reported on Thursday in Nebraska at $195, steady with last week. The Cattle on Feed report is expected to show a sharp decline in placements during October with cattle on feed down 4%-6% from a year ago. December CME cattle futures are 10 cents lower at $125.50.

Lean hog futures are mixed. The pork cutout was down 27 cents on Thursday to $81.30. The cutout is down over $5 so far this week with hams and bellies leading the decline each down about $10 per cwt. Iowa/Minnesota hogs weighted average price was down $1.50 to $74.38. Lower pork prices are weighing on futures. December CME lean hogs are 2 cents lower at $80.07.

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