Corn futures were higher on Monday. Export demand continues as South Korean feed mills are tending for new-crop corn. As expected there were no delivery notices against May futures. Weekend showers covered most of the Corn Belt. Frequent showers across the Midwest over the next week to ten days will cause planting delays. Expectations are for planting progress this afternoon to come in from 40%-45%, compared to 27% for the five-year average. July corn settled 8 3/4 cents higher at $6.34 ¼. The December contract was 4 ½ cents higher at $5.43 ¼.
Soybean futures settled higher on Monday. The soybean market saw a stampede of late session buying that reversed the market from early morning losses. Early sales were linked to large delivery notices against the May futures contract. Midday weather forecast maps indicated the potential for lots of rain over the next several days about the Great Lakes. If those rains do fall on top of soils already moistened by weekend rains, the result could be delays in planting soybeans. July futures closed 12 cents higher at $15.05 1/2 and November surged 19 cents to close at $13.81.
Wheat futures closed higher on Monday. Prices rebounded from morning losses, with corn lending support. Wheat is still being influenced by moves in corn as it is currently price competitive as a feed grain. Additional support came from end-of-month short-covering. Gains were limited by favorable rains in the U.S. Plains and Eastern Europe over the weekend. The annual winter wheat crop tour is getting underway this week and we will provide you with additional insights through our website and Twitter. CBOT July was 4 1/2 cents higher at $6.54 1/2; KCBT July was 3 cents higher at $6.62; MGE July was 4 3/4 cents higher at $7.83 1/2.
Cattle futures closed higher on Monday. Futures traded both sides of unchanged early in the session, but gained strength as the day progressed particularly once the April contract expired at noon. June’s steep discount to last week’s cash trade was supportive. Beef prices were lower Friday and steady to lower at midday on Monday. However, after the recent steep losses, cattle futures become deeply oversold and due for a bounce. June cattle futures settled $1.30 higher at $114.15. August was 65 cents higher at $116.20.
Lean hog futures closed mixed on Monday. Nearby futures contracts posted sizable declines with June down 40 cents at $86.20 and July 90 cents lower at $86.63. Cash hog and pork prices remain weak keeping futures prices from rallying. Higher corn prices did provide a modest boost for deferred hog futures.