Crop markets fell in reaction to the Friday USDA reports

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Corn futures declined significantly prior to the midday release of the USDA WASDE and Crop Production reports, which probably reflected early U.S. dollar gains. The reports seemed somewhat bearish for the corn market, since they forecast the carryout for both 2012/13 and 2013/14 slightly above average industry predictions. July corn fell 12.5 cents to $6.3425/bushel at its Friday settlement, while December dropped 12.0 cents to $5.295.

Prices across the soy complex were mixed Friday morning. The midsession WASDE and Crop Production reports changed that somewhat, with bean and meal futures moving modestly lower in concert with the grain markets. In contract, oil futures staged a modest rally. As with the corn forecasts, 2012/13 and 2013/14 soybean carryout stocks were projected at levels above generally anticipated levels. July soybean futures had fallen 9.75 cents to $13.99/bushel as trading ended for the week Friday afternoon, whereas July soyoil rose 0.01 cents to 49.23 cents/pound, and July soybean meal slid $6.4 to $406.8/ton.

Wheat futures came under considerable downward pressure Friday morning, as traders reacted badly to the U.S. dollar advance. The USDA WASDE and Crop Production data published later in the morning were also seen as bearish, since a predicted record for global production implied a big surge in global supplies down the road. July CBOT wheat futures dove 19.25 cents to $7.0425/bushel at its Friday close, while July KCBT wheat plunged 20.75 cents to $7.5875, and July MGE futures tumbled 16.75 cents to $8.0875.

News of surprising cash market weakness undercut cattle futures despite record-high beef prices this week. Traders obviously expect much more spot market slippage over the next few weeks, which largely explains the CME weakness seen Friday. Live cattle futures did not react significantly to the USDA reports. June cattle closed 0.10 cents lower at 120.45 cents/pound Friday afternoon, while December bounced 0.37 cents to 125.67. Feeder cattle futures surged in response to the prospect of lower feed costs during the coming months. August jumped 0.65 cents to 146.62 cents/pound, while November moved 0.92 cents higher to 151.92.

Chicago hog prices remained under pressure Friday morning despite recent cash and wholesale strength. The futures weakness almost surely reflects the growing belief that the early-spring hog/pork rally has run its course. As with cattle futures, the swine market also responded little to the USDA reports. June hog futures edged 0.07 cents lower to 90.50 cents/pound to end the week, while December futures lost 0.40 cents to 77.25.


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