Livestock markets buck pressure on demand concerns

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Corn futures are trading higher at midday. Corn futures seem to be stuck in a narrow trading range between 2 to 5 cents higher going into midday trade. The market is being supported by firm gains in the soy complex. However, weak export demand remains a concern for the market. Yesterday’s crop progress report showed corn harvest 91 percent complete, slightly below analysts’ estimates but well above the previous year. December corn futures are trading 2 ¾ cents higher.

Soybean futures are trading higher at midday. Soybean futures are extending gains on production concerns in South America and export demand optimism. Recent heavy rains in Argentina, a key soybean growing region, are expected to hinder the soybean plantings and potentially lead to lower than expected output. As concern circulates pertaining to the forthcoming South American soy crop, demand for U.S. soybeans is expected to increase. November soybean futures are trading 18 cents higher.

Wheat futures are trading higher at midday. Global supply worries and dry conditions in the U.S. Plains are supporting futures prices. Strong gains in the soybean market are also helping to boost prices. USDA reported its first condition ratings for the forthcoming winter wheat crop. U.S. winter wheat was pegged at 40 percent good/excellent, 6 percentage points lower than the previous year. December wheat futures at CBOT are trading 9 cents higher.

Live cattle futures are trading higher at midday. Cattle futures are building momentum despite strong pressure from ailing boxed beef prices. Choice beef cutouts were reported $3.40 lower while select cutouts declined $1.23 cents. Poor packer margins, unsupportive fundamentals, and sluggish demand are expected to keep futures trading defensively throughout the remainder of the session. Light trade in the cash market is reported at steady to lower versus the previous week. December cattle futures are trading 58 cents higher.

Lean hog futures are extending gains at midday. Nearby futures contracts (December) are being supported by futures discount the CME lean hog index and residual buying from yesterday’s gains. Pork processor margins are improving but bids remain steady to lower, adding downward pressure on cash prices. December hog futures are trading 77 cents higher.

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