The crop markets moved generally higher late Monday morning. The U.S. dollar set back from it late-week highs over the weekend, while the equity markets remained under downward pressure. Those competing influences may have encouraged crop market buying, especially with El Nino now dominating the central Pacific. Traders seem to be becoming somewhat concerned about corn and soybean prospects due to the shifting of weather conditions. Traders are awaiting today’s 3pm CST crop progress report. July corn rose 3.25 cents to $3.64/bushel mid-session Monday and December gained 3.5 cents to $3.815.
Talk of Chinese demand may have encouraged buyers of soybeans and meal. Excessive rainfall over the central U.S. is delaying late soybean plantings, thereby raising questions about planted acreage and fall yields. Positive crush margins in the U.S. and South America are providing support for soybeans as global meal demand is causing some Midwest processors to scramble for soybeans. Soybean oil followed the crude and palm oil markets lower. July soybean futures climbed 9.34 cents to $9.475/bushel late morning Monday, while July soyoil slumped 0.63 cents to 34.15 cents/pound, and July meal bounced $5.5 to $310.4/ton.
Wheat rallied as this week’s action got underway. Although the global market remains very well supplied, concerns about the new-crop outlook are apparently supporting the golden grain markets at this juncture. Not only does the recent emergence of El Nino conditions in the central Pacific suggest forthcoming drought in Australia and Southeast Asia, recent rainfall has opened the door for disease in the U.S. winter wheat crop. July CBOT wheat futures climbed 11.25 cents to $5.2825/bushel during the mid morning session Monday, while July KC wheat gained 9.75 cents to $5.45/bushel, and July MWE moved up 9.25 to $5.8075.
Live cattle futures traded higher in the late Monday morning session after ending lower last Friday. Friday’s reversal probably reflected bearish seasonal expectations, since cattle prices traditionally decline significantly during early summer. Monday’s report of the cash beef marked softening hasn’t deterred a rise in futures. August cattle futures gained 0.17 cents to 150.80 cents/pound late Monday morning, while December futures climbed 0.15 cents to 153.90. Meanwhile, August feeder cattle futures are up 0.05 cents to 221.95 cents/pound, and November feeders lost 0.60 to 217.27.
Hog futures traded lower during late AM trading Monday after they seemed to rally last Friday due to the anticipation of the traditional early-summer demand. It appears that pork prices have continued to stay moderate after last year’s PED outbreak caused retail pork to peak at $4.22/lb in September 2014. The pork market awaits the USDA June Hogs and Pigs report which will be released on June 26th. August hog futures slid 0.22 cents late Monday morning to 80.60 cents/pound, while December lost 0.15 to 67.05.
Cotton futures are rebounding late Monday morning. Technical factors seem to be affecting cotton moves. Cotton futures have traded within a wide range in recent weeks, but have recently been confined by moving average support and resistance. Divergent influences such as the weekend slippage in both the U.S. Dollar and stock index futures have apparently left the door open to technically inspired traders. For example, July futures rebounded from their 10-day moving average overnight and were testing resistance associated with their 20-dayMA in early Monday trading. July cotton futures advanced 0.79 cents to 64.80 cents/pound in midday Monday trading, and December ran up 0.63 to 65.18.