Corn seemed to track wheat again Monday. Corn futures followed wheat higher last week and again Sunday night, then turned lower in concert with this morning’s wheat reversal. The corn drop was rather surprising, especially in light of the strong result on the weekly USDA Export Inspections report. Technical resistance may have played a significant role in the yellow grain decline. May corn futures slipped 1.5 cents to $3.85/bushel at Monday’s close, while December lost 0.75 to $4.0975.
The soy markets traded remained mixed Monday. Talk of large South American supplies, particularly with incipient Argentine production set to boost Brazilian totals, appeared to depress soybean and meal prices today. Meanwhile, resurgent crude oil prices boosted soyoil quotes. Meal may also have suffered from the unwinding of long meal/short oil crush spreads. May soybean futures slid 7.5 cents to $9.785/bushel in late Monday trading, while May soyoil rallied 0.22 cents to 31.26 cents/pound, and May meal dipped $4.3 to $323.0/ton.
The wheat markets couldn’t sustain Sunday night gains. Talk of persistent southern Plains dryness reportedly powered wheat gains late last week and again last night. However, bulls couldn’t sustain the upward momentum this morning, with the nearby Chicago contract seeming to fail at major chart resistance around the $5.40 level. Wire service reports cited poor export demand for the reversal. May CBOT wheat ended Monday having fallen 8.5 cents to $5.2775/bushel, while May KC wheat dropped 10.75 cents to $5.72/bushel, and May MWE wheat sank 5.75 to $5.8975.
Cattle futures couldn’t sustain their early surge. Fed cattle reportedly traded actively at $168/cwt (cents/pound) in Nebraska last Friday. That $3 weekly rise almost surely triggered today’s strong CME opening. However, futures set back sharply from their early highs, thereby reflecting industry expectations for a big seasonal setback during late spring and early summer. June cattle futures plunged 1.62 cents to 151.75 cents/pound at Monday’s CME settlement, while August cattle dove 1.52 to 148.30 cents/pound. Meanwhile, May feeder cattle futures slumped 0.57 cents to 216.87 cents/pound, and August feeders tumbled 0.80 to 217.75.
Wholesale expectations probably affected CME hogs. Pork demand seems depressed at this point, which made Friday afternoon news of sizeable pork price gains rather impressive. However, doubts about short-term buying seemed to undercut the expiring April contract, whereas optimism about late-spring and summer prospects apparently boosted deferred futures. June hog futures settled 0.90 cents higher at 76.60 cents/pound Monday, while December climbed 0.77 to 67.47.
Indian news may have sparked Monday’s cotton gains. A report from the USDA’s India attaché, who published an Indian cotton production estimate about 1.0 million tonnes below the latest official quote from the USDA, may partially explain today’s early fiber market strength. The equity indexes also shrugged offer early losses, thereby suggesting firm apparel demand in mid-2015. A respected industry analyst reportedly issued a bullish report today as well. May cotton jumped 1.65 cents to 65.34 cents/pound as New York trading ended Monday, while December futures rose 0.38 to 64.92.