Corn futures closed slightly higher on Monday. After closing lower the previous five trading session, short-covering helped push futures slightly higher. But buying interest was limited by generally favorable weather for crop growth. USDA is expected to show improved crop condition ratings in the Crop Progress report on Monday afternoon from the 69% good to excellent rating last week. July ended 1/4 of a cent higher at $7.00 1/2 and December was 1/2 of a cent higher at $6.60 1/2.
Soybean futures traded higher on Monday. Short-covering supported prices following the losses posted last week. The futures market remains in a trading range and supportive factors include the still tight ending stocks estimates, uncertainty about flooded soybean acreage in the Missouri River Valley and ideas that some soybean acreage may go unplanted due to wet conditions. Gains were limited by generally favorable weather for crop development. July closed 2 3/4 cents higher at $13.35 3/4 and November was 2 1/4 cents higher at $13.35 1/2.
Wheat futures were mostly lower on Monday. Seasonal harvest pressure, improved crop weather in western Europe and technical selling weighed on most contracts. The spot CBOT contract fell to the lowest level in 6 1/2 months. The MGE closed mixed with July finding support from more rain in the northern Plains that will prevent late planting of the spring wheat crop. USDA will update harvest progress and spring wheat planting progress on Monday afternoon. CBOT July closed 13 cents lower at $6.59 1/4, KCBT July was 3 1/2 cents lower at $8.01 while MGE July ended 3 1/4 cents higher at $9.00 1/2.
Cattle futures closed strongly higher on Monday. The bullish Cattle on Feed report, expectations for higher cash trade this week and firm beef prices on Friday and midday Monday supported the market. USDA reported May placements at 89% of year-ago, while traders were looking for it to be around 92%. Total numbers of cattle on feed were up 4% from last year versus expectations of it being up 5%-6%. Cash trade was mostly $108-$109 last week and current ideas are for the cash market to be up $1 this year. June was $2.08 higher at $111.83 and August was $1.78 higher at $111.98.
Lean hog futures were sharply higher on Monday. Strength in the cash market and the $2.96 jump in pork cutouts values on Friday supported futures trade. Tightening hog supplies and the improvement in pork cutouts helped packers raised bids for hogs today. Spillover support from cattle also contributed to the rally in futures. July closed $1.90 higher at $97.55 and August was $1.83 higher at $96.68.