Soybeans and meal are still leading the crop markets upward. The weekly USDA Crop Progress report stated the corn harvest a bit farther along than expected, but the result had little impact. Corn is clearly chasing soybean and meal prices higher as traders reacted to persistently strong protein demand. December corn futures climbed 6.5 cents to $3.695/bushel in early Monday trading, while May added 6.25 to $3.9175.
The Crop Progress report didn’t slow the soy advance. Monday’s strong export news sent soybean and meal prices soaring, although oil lagged. That market joined its counterparts this morning as crude and palm oil rebounded. The weekly Crop Progress report indicated the bean harvest is a bit farther along than anticipated, but the news did little to discourage bulls. November soybean futures jumped 17.0 cents to $10.23/bushel Monday night, while December soyoil surged 0.42 cents to 32.65 cents/pound, and December soymeal leapt $13.5 to $390.3/ton.
The wheat markets are also climbing. Strength spilling over from the soy complex is obviously supporting the wheat markets as well, but bulls are also reacting to a surprisingly low winter wheat condition rating on the Crop Progress report. A report arguing that Australian production will fall 5% short of forecasts is almost surely encouraging bulls as well. December CBOT wheat rallied 6.5 cents to $5.2925/bushel in predawn Tuesday action, while December KC wheat advanced 6.0 cents to $6.0075/bushel, and December MWE wheat lifted 5.0 to $5.7675.
Cattle traders seem likely to open higher. The CME went to new GLOBEX trading hours Monday, with the most immediate change being the lack of overnight livestock futures trading. It ended at 4:00 PM CDT and will resume at 8:00 AM this morning. We think afternoon wholesale strength will support cattle futures upon today’s opening. December live cattle futures advanced 0.92 cents to 167.82 cents/pound as Monday’s CME pit session ended, while April futures rallied 1.50 to 166.27. Meanwhile, November feeder cattle futures rose 0.15 cents to 234.80 cents/pound, and January feeders gained 0.55 cents to 229.45.
Hog futures could surge on today’s opening. Seasonal worries likely depressed nearby CME hog futures Monday, with traders focusing upon the complex’s history of fourth quarter losses and the big mid-October breakdown. However, pork cutout rose yesterday and cash losses seemed rather small. CME futures had bounced in late-afternoon GLOBEX action. December hog futures dove 1.20 cents to 89.05 cents/pound at their Monday settlement, while April hogs fell 0.90 to 88.30.
Cotton traded in mixed fashion Monday night. The weekly Crop Progress results seemed somewhat bearish for cotton futures since the conditions rating improved slightly. The harvest is lagging a bit, but not substantially. Those data are apparently weighing on deferred futures, but the nearby December contract edged up in concert with soybean and equity index futures gains. December cotton futures edged up 0.06 cents to 63.73 cents/pound shortly after dawn Tuesday, while March futures sank 0.12 cents to 62.07.