Crop markets moved generally lower Wednesday night

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Concerns about Chinese demand seemingly undercut corn futures Wednesday night. Chinese officials rejected five recent shipments of U.S. corn contaminated with an unapproved GMO strain early Wednesday morning, although that did little to depress CBOT futures yesterday. However, an overnight report from Chinese officials arguing that their future corn consumption will grow more slowly seemed to weigh upon Chicago prices. March corn dropped 4.25 cents to $4.3225/bushel in early Thursday trading, while May lost 4.25 to $4.4025.

Soybeans are bumping up against major technical resistance. Asian palm oil weakness seemed to undercut the soyoil market again Wednesday night, otherwise the soy complex lacked for substantive news. Thus, soy values came under general pressure along with corn and wheat in overnight trading. The fact that the nearby bean contracts failed at major chart resistance probably played a role in the decline as well. January soybean futures slid 4.25 cents to $13.2525/bushel early Thursday morning, while January soyoil sagged 0.12 cents to 40.23 cents/pound, and January soymeal declined $1.0 to $429.3/ton.

Talk of increased production continued weighing upon wheat markets. Canadian production apparently smashed all forecasts last summer, so news to that effect depressed wheat prices Wednesday. The FAO followed the Canadian result with an increase to its global estimate last night, thereby keeping downward pressure upon prices. March CBOT wheat futures dipped 5.5 cents to $6.5625/bushel around dawn Thursday, while March KCBT wheat futures slumped 3.75 cents to $7.005, and March MWE futures skidded 0.5 to $6.92.

Cattle futures traded firmly again early Thursday morning. Wintry weather over the Great Plains could greatly hamper the performance of feedlot cattle during the days ahead, thereby curtailing market-ready supplies and boosting country prices. That possibility, as well as Wednesday’s wholesale firmness probably supported futures again overnight. February cattle futures rose 0.12 cents to 134.55 cents/pound as Thursday dawned in Chicago, while the April contract edged up 0.05 to 135.00. Meanwhile, January feeder cattle ran up 0.72 cents to 165.77 cents/pound, and March feeders gained 0.47 to 165.82.

Cash and pork losses are depressing hog futures. Although the expiring December future fell Wednesday, ideas about 2014 strength supported the deferred contracts. However, afternoon reports indicating substantial cash and wholesale losses rather obviously dragged the complex lower in Wednesday night. February hog futures tumbled 0.32 cents to 88.67 cents/pound in early Thursday action, while June lost 0.35 to 99.52.

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