Corn futures are trading lower at midsession. Corn futures slid on weak export sales. USDA’s weekly export sales data for corn was 865,000 tonnes, below estimates of 900,000 to 1.3 million tonnes. However, foreign demand for corn will lend some support to prices. China is expecting to raise its 2012/13 corn imports to 6 million tonnes, up from the 2011/12 estimates of 5.5 million tonnes. Strong cash basis and spillover support from the wheat market will limit losses as well. July is 1/2 cents lower at $6.19 1/2 and December is unchanged at $5.26 1/4.
Soybean futures are trading higher at midsession. Soybean futures rallied on strong export demand data. The USDA announced a sale of 480,000 tonnes of soybeans to China for delivery in 2011/12 this morning. Declines in the South American soybean crop are also boosting demand for US soybeans, providing additional support to prices. The July contract is up 20 3/4 cents at $14.42 3/4, and the November contract is up 13 cents at $13.15 1/4.
Wheat futures are trading higher at midsession. Wheat futures are rising on concerns of crop-damaging weather. Expectations of continued dry weather in the US Plains, Russia, Ukraine, and Australia are pushing prices upward. Additionally, USDA reported exports sales of 100,000 tonnes of U.S. hard red winter wheat to Iraq for 2012/13 delivery. CBOT July is 9 1/4 cents higher at $6.48; KCBT July is 9 1/2 cents higher at $6.55; and MGE July is 11 3/4 cents higher at $7.771 3/4.
Cattle futures are trading higher at midday. Prices are steady as expectations for steady to higher cash prices in the market this week. There has not been much movement in cattle but asking prices are expected to start at $122 in the South and $195 in the North. The USDA Cattle on Feed Report is expected to show April placements down 11.6 percent, pushing prices up as traders adjust their positions in the market. June cattle futures are 72 cents higher at $117.60 and August is 60 cents higher at $119.55.
Lean hog futures are trading higher at midday. Hog futures rebounded after opening down on declining cutout values and weak demand. Prices are supported by the rally in the cattle market and expected higher cash prices for the current week. Cash prices are expected to remain firm at 50 cents to $1 higher this week. The June contract is up 73 cents at $87.23, and July is 70 cents higher at $88.27.