Corn futures closed locked limit down on Thursday. Acreage and Grain Stocks reports from USDA this morning were bearish for prices. Acreage is pegged at 92.3 million acres, up 104,000 acres from planting intentions. This compares to trade expectations for a 1.4 million cut in acreage from intentions to 90.8 million. June 1 corn stocks were an even larger bearish surprise than acreage, with stocks estimated at 3.670 billion bushels, 368 million above the average of trade estimates. Look for USDA to cut feed and residual use and boost 2010/11 ending stocks in the supply and demand update on July 12. September fell 30 cents at $6.48 and December ended 30 cents lower at $6.20 1/2.
Soybean futures traded solidly lower on Thursday although losses were less severe than for corn and wheat. USDA released bullish acreage views for soybeans this morning that were partially offset by more soybean stocks on June 1 than most had expected. While in total the news was moderately friendly for soybeans, it was negated by weakness in corn. USDA reduced its forecast for soybean plantings to 75.2 million acres from its previous forecast at 76.6 million. USDA reported June 1 stocks at 619 million bushels, which is about 20 million bushels more than expected. August closed 28 cents lower at $12.99 1/2 and November was 29 cents lower at $12.94.
Wheat futures were sharply lower on Thursday. USDA reports were mixed for wheat this morning, but spillover weakness from corn and the bearish Stocks report weighed on futures. June 1 Acreage was supportive for for wheat as total wheat acreage was pegged at 56.4 million acres, down 1.3 million acres from its June WASDE estimate and down about 240,000 from the average pre-report trade estimate. However, acreage planted to spring wheat was above trade expectations while durum was down sharply. June 1 wheat stocks of 861 million bushels were 35 million above trade expectations. CBOT September closed down the 60 cent limit at $6.14 1/4, KCBT September was 56 3/4 cents lower at $7.07 1/4 and MGE September fell 54 1/2 cents to $7.95.
Cattle futures closed lower on Thursday, led by weakness in deferred contracts. Sharp losses in corn and prospects for cheaper feed weighed on deferred contracts on ideas that beef production will increase. Front end futures were pulled lower as well. Larger showlists this week and slipping beef prices are likely to keep the cash market in check with last week. So far, no cash trade has been reported this week. August closed 70 cents lower at $110.88 and October was $1.20 lower at $117.20.
Lean hogs futures traded sharply lower on Thursday. Deferred contracts lead the decline with the losses in corn driving ideas of increased pork production in 2012. Front end futures were pulled lower as well. Cash hog prices were mostly steady to $1 lower today as packer demand was limited by reduced slaughter schedules during the July Fourth holiday weekend. July closed 83 cents lower at $94.40 and August was $1.50 lower at $91.68. Contracts for 2012 were $2.35 to $2.90 lower.