Traders cited current rainfall for firming crop markets. Although Monday’s USDA Crop Progress report stated the corn harvest as being farther along than was expected, nearby corn futures rebounded slightly today. Wire service sources credited rains expected to dominate the Midwest from today through Thursday for the bounce. December corn futures edged up 1.25 cents to $4.32 Tuesday, while May futures added 0.75 cent to $4.5275.
The soy complex also rebounded from Monday’s breakdown. Soy markets were likely oversold on a short-term basis after yesterday’s drop, which may have added power to today’s bounce. Bulls seemingly got support from the Crop Progress report, firm cash prices and from strength spilling over Asian palm oil markets. November soybean futures gained 7.5 cents to $12.79/bushel at Tuesday’s close, while December soyoil jumped 0.61 cents to 40.97 cents/pound, but December soymeal dropped $3.9 to $410.8/ton.
The wheat markets bounced from technical support. Recent wheat news has been generally supportive, so Monday’s breakdown was probably exaggerated by technical considerations. Conversely, having the Chicago and Minneapolis find firm support around their respective 40-day moving averages, very likely played a significant role in their late rebound. December CBOT wheat futures closed 0.25 cent higher at $6.8125/bushel Tuesday afternoon, while December KCBT wheat futures rose 1.0 cent to $7.5175, and December MWE futures were steady at $7.365.
Surging beef prices boosted cattle futures again today. Although a report that Taiwanese officials had found U.S. beef containing Zilmax at one of its restaurants seemed to weigh upon prices overnight, cattle futures rebounded as the day passed. Midday news that wholesale prices were continuing to rise probably sparked fresh optimism about the cattle market outlook. December cattle rallied 0.47 cents to 134.27 cents/pound late Tuesday afternoon, whereas April skidded 0.05 to 134.55. November feeder cattle tumbled 0.32 cents to 166.75 cents/pound and January feeders lost 0.02 to 166.90.
A report from an industry analyst may have undercut hog futures Tuesday. A prominent swine industry insider published a report today arguing that the PEDV outbreak was not responsible for the recent shortfall in hog supplies and that November totals will prove much larger; that appeared to depress hog futures this morning. Midsession wholesale losses probably weighed upon prices as well. December hog futures fell 0.60 cents to 91.35 cents/pound at their Tuesday settlement, while April dove 0.65 cents to 95.75 cents/pound.