Soybeans and corn diverged from losses in the other ag markets

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Corn market bulls seem to overcome bearish influences Thursday. Improved conditions look favorable for new-crop corn production, which weighed somewhat upon deferred futures today. Conversely, spillover bean strength and good exports supported the bullish cause and apparently outweighed bearish factors. July corn rose 2.25 cents to $4.7675/bushel at their Thursday close, while December gained 1.75 cents to $4.735.

Export data supported both new and old crop beans Thursday. The weekly USDA Export Sales report stated 2013/14 sales of beans, meal and oil above forecasts, thereby boosting old crop prices. A daily report indicated another big new-crop sale to China. Traders still doubt crop plantings are all that favorable, which apparently caused deferred futures to outperform nearbys. July soybeans climbed 13.5 cents to $15.1875/bushel in late Thursday trading, while July soyoil ran up 0.39 cents to 40.86 cents/pound, and July soymeal lifted $3.4 to $501.5/ton.

The wheat markets couldn’t sustain early firmness. A general lack of Wednesday-night news seemingly allowed bean strength to spill over into the wheat pits. The weekly Export Sales data met expectations. Nevertheless, futures turned decidedly lower this morning, which probably reflected forecasts for improved winter wheat growing conditions and spring wheat plantings. July CBOT wheat futures dropped 5.0 cents to $6.5925/bushel at Thursday’s settlement, while July KCBT wheat futures fell 9.75 cents to $7.5175, and July MWE futures tumbled 7.75 cents to $7.31.

Reports of cash cattle weakness apparently triggered CME selling. Although wholesale beef prices rose again yesterday, that strength didn’t translate into higher cash bids. In fact, Nebraska cattlemen sold a few animals for about 0.5-cent less than they had last week. That news seemingly triggered a drop in CME futures today. June cattle dipped 0.67 cents to 137.60 cents/pound in late Thursday action, while December slid 0.45 cents to 145.45. Meanwhile, August feeder cattle dove 1.15 to 195.37 cents/pound, and October lost 0.92 cents to 196.50.

Cash and wholesale losses undercut hog futures Thursday. CME lean hog futures rallied in apparent anticipation of larger seasonal gains Wednesday. However, late-afternoon reports indicated the cash and wholesale markets had reversed to the downside and continued falling today. Those declines very likely played big roles in today’s Chicago breakdown. June hog futures plummeted 2.32 cents to 117.60 cents/pound as Thursday’s pit session ended, while December sank 0.25 to 95.05.

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