Outside markets and weather weighed upon ag futures Thursday

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Corn futures dropped sharply Thursday. The drop was somewhat surprising since the equity markets were making new highs, but concurrent U.S. dollar gains seemed to weigh upon commodities. That seemed to exaggerate the bearish impact of near-perfect summer weather. September corn futures fell 11.5 cents to $4.875/bushel at Thursday’s close, while December dove 12.0 cents to $4.67.

The soy complex was mixed Thursday. The same weather and currency developments that were depressing corm weighed upon beans and meal. Conversely, rebounding palm oil prices rather obviously boosted soyoil values as well. September soybean futures tumbled 15.5 cents to $12.3425/bushel in Thursday morning trading, while November beans plunged 13.75 cents to $11.925. September soyoil climbed 0.40 cents to 42.60 cents/pound, while September soymeal sagged $6.3 to $397.7/ton.

Wheat futures bounced from early lows Thursday. The surging U.S. dollar probably played a role in the early wheat slide as well. The weekly Export Sales report seemed neutral, but a morning report from the World Grain Council may also have undercut prices. And yet, wheat futures erased much of their early weakness later in the day, as export optimism and domestic quality concerns once again evoked support. September CBOT wheat dropped 6.25 cents to $6.585/bushel in late Thursday trading, while September KCBT wheat was unchanged at $7.0675, and September MGE futures edged 0.5 cent higher to $7.4175.

Flat cash prices dragged cattle futures downward Thursday. Despite general expectations for cash and wholesale strength during the coming weeks and months, recent events make traders wonder if the premiums already built into Chicago prices have already incorporated the rise. Midsession news that Southern Plains trading had stalled once again seemed to exaggerate early CME losses. October cattle sank 0.98 cents to 124.50 cents/pound at its Thursday settlement, while December tanked by 1.02 cents to 127.35. September feeder futures bounced 0.28 cents to 157.25 cents/pound on the corn weakness, and November added 0.20 cents to 160.25.

Hog futures bucked the general downward trend Thursday. In contrast to the cattle premiums, discounts built into hog futures seemingly leave them room to rally even when current conditions don’t seem particularly bullish. Still, late morning news of cash and wholesale weakness may have limited CME gains later in the day. October hog futures closed 0.57 cents higher at 83.90 cents/pound Thursday, while December advanced 0.40 cents to 80.90.

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