Corn futures are trading higher at midday. The market is being supported by export news. USDA reported the sales of 271,200 metric tons of corn to an “unknown destination”, which many believe is China. Gains are being limited by strength in the dollar and weakness in crude oil prices at midsession. USDA will update planting progress on Monday. More rainfall in the eastern Corn Belt will further delay planting progress. July is 5 cents higher at $6.85 1/2 and December is 3 3/4 cents higher at $6.34.
Soybean futures are lower at midsession. Profit-taking is weighing on futures ahead of the weekend. The market had opened higher on firm crude oil futures, but soybean futures fell as crude oil turned lower and the dollar index rallied. Sluggish export demand remains a bearish market concern. China has slowed soybean purchases and has taken steps this week to slow inflation, which could further limit demand. July is 10 cents lower at $13.32 3/4 and November is 8 1/4 cents lower at $13.18.
Wheat futures are higher at midday. The market is rebounding slightly from recent weakness. Export demand is expected to get a boost from the setback in prices. Poor winter wheat conditions ratings in the southern Plains and spring wheat planting delays in the northern Plains remain bullish fundamental factors. CBOT July is 2 1/4 cents higher at $7.37 3/4, KCBT July is 4 cents higher at $8.80 1/4 and MGE July is 4 1/2 cents higher at $9.09 1/4.
Cattle futures are trading lower at midsession. The market is being pressured by the $2.41 decline in choice beef prices on Thursday and cash trade being down generally $3 this week. Cash trade developed at mostly $112 this week compared to $115 last week. Losses are being limited by ideas that warmer weather will help domestic demand improve seasonally and due to strong export demand. June is 35 cents lower at $109.50 and August is 48 cents lower at $110.95.
Lean hog futures are mostly lower at midday. Futures were initially supported by the $2.64 jump in pork cutouts on Thursday and strength in the cash market. Improved packer margins and tight supplies of market ready hogs are supporting cash prices again today. However, profit-taking from recent gains ahead of the weekend is weighing lightly on the market. June is 5 cents lower at $94.15 and July is 48 cents lower at $93.68.
Cotton futures are trading mixed at midsession. Old-crop futures are higher on a short-covering bounce, but new-crop is down strongly on concern that steps by China to slow inflation will hurt demand for cotton. July is 97 points higher at 145.27 cents while December is 278 points lower at 116.41 cents.