Soy, cotton lagged the other ag markets Tuesday morning

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Talk of prospective rainfall sparked Tuesday’s corn bounce. Midwest farmers are likely to plant corn very actively this week, anticipation of which seemed to depress CBOT futures Monday night. However, the latest forecasts are pointing toward increased rainfall next week. That implies persistently slow plantings and diminished harvest prospects. July corn rallied 4.0 cents to $5.12/bushel late Tuesday morning, while December rose 4.0 cents to $5.04.

Forecasts for increased bean imports are undercutting the soy complex. The U.S. soy situation remains very tight and current prospects for fall don’t look a great deal better, since plantings seem likely to be significantly delayed once again. However, traders have apparently been persuaded that inflows of South American and Canadian beans will accelerate during the coming weeks, thereby undercutting old crop prices. July soybeans fell 14.25 cents to $14.49/bushel in Tuesday morning action, while July soyoil skidded 0.02 cents to 41.15 cents/pound, and July soymeal sank $6.4 to $472.3/ton.

Wheat futures rebounded on weather and war concerns. Southern Plains weather still looks too hot and the Black Sea situation hasn’t improved, so it wasn’t terribly surprising to see wheat futures rebound from overnight losses this morning. Concurrent U.S. dollar weakness also looks supportive. July CBOT wheat futures climbed 7.0 cents to $7.36/bushel around midsession Tuesday, while July KCBT wheat futures surged 10.5 cents to $8.425, and July MWE futures jumped 14.25 to $8.035.

Prospects for an early-May bounce may be supporting cattle futures. Although the cattle market traditionally declines through the second quarter, grocers also tend to buy beef aggressively during the first half of May as they gear up for Memorial Day features. Rising wholesale values would encourage such ideas. June cattle rallied 0.85 cents to 138.37 cents/pound just before lunchtime Tuesday, while December gained 0.70 cents at 144.62. Meanwhile, August feeder cattle soared 2.00 cents to 191.80 cents/pound, and October leapt 1.75 cents to 192.42.

Evidence of price firmness is probably boosting hogs as well. After having fallen sharply since peaking in early April, cash hog and wholesale pork values have seemed to stabilize lately. Those posted a general advance Monday, thereby suggesting the normal pre-Memorial Day rally is getting underway. June hog futures spiked 2.02 cents to 124.37 cents/pound in early Tuesday action, while December stalled at 95.00.

Demand concerns may be weighing on cotton futures. As with the other crops, Monday’s weekly USDA Crop Progress report indicated cotton plantings running well behind normal. That news, along with overnight U.S. dollar losses looked supportive of ICE futures, but those declined in concert with the soy and grain complexes. Ultimately, doubts about future Chinese demand seem to be weighing on fiber values. July cotton tumbled 0.79 cents to 93.96 cents/pound shortly before midday (EDT) Tuesday, while December cotton slumped 0.44 to 84.09.

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