A private report seemed to undercut corn. Little news concerning corn emerged last night, so the yellow grain market seemed to benefit from support spilling over from the soybean and wheat markets. Strong demand expectations were probably providing background support as well. But prices dipped after a private forecaster published a 2014/15 U.S. production estimate only slightly below last fall’s USDA result. March corn futures sagged 0.5 cent to $4.055/bushel late Tuesday morning, while July lost 0.75 to $4.205.
Continued Chinese purchases are boosting the soy complex. Persistent crude oil losses are again weighing on the soyoil market, while talk of huge Argentine sales in late December may be limiting bullish interest in beans and meal. Still, early-morning news that China bought more beans for delivery this year and next supported the latter two markets Tuesday morning. March soybean futures gained 2.0 cents to $10.4725/bushel around midsession Tuesday, while March soyoil edged 0.03 lower to 32.84 cents/pound, and March meal slipped $0.9 to $353.1/ton.
Deteriorating winter wheat conditions are powering futures gains. Talk of Chinese buying supported wheat futures Monday, with talk of freeze damage to uncovered winter wheat adding to the bullish mix. The latter development was confirmed by state condition reports yesterday afternoon. Buying from traders looking for arctic conditions over the Great Plains tonight are rather obviously powering the latest advance. March CBOT wheat surged 11.25 cents to $6.0025/bushel in late Tuesday morning action, while March KC wheat leapt 13.75 cents to $6.385/bushel, and March MWE wheat jumped 14.5 to $6.36.
Cattle futures failed at technical resistance. News of a huge cash market rebound and persistent wholesale strength sparked recent gains in CME cattle futures. However, the nearby February contract proved unable to close decisively above its 40-day moving average during that span, which apparently prompted aggressive technical selling Tuesday morning. February live cattle fell 1.15 cents to 165.07 cents/pound just before lunchtime Tuesday, while April futures dove 1.27 cents to 164.17. January feeder cattle futures plunged 1.82 cents to 223.85 cents/pound and March feeders plummeted 3.77 cents to 219.60.
Depressed spot quotes seemed to undercut hog futures. The hog and pork industry has been anticipating a seasonal rally during the days and weeks ahead. However, they seemingly threw in the towel on short-term bullish positions this morning, despite the fact that yesterday’s (one-day) quote used in calculating the CME index was actually higher than last Friday’s. February hog futures dropped 1.32 cents to 78.60 cents/pound in late Tuesday morning action, while June hogs tumbled 1.35 cents to 90.62.
Cotton lost its upward momentum Tuesday morning. After talk of reduced 2015 production and robust demand powered recent cotton market gains, bulls proved unable to sustain the rally this morning. One has to suspect Monday’s big equity market breakdown and persistent U.S. dollar strength, both of which seemingly bode ill for apparel demand, caused the ICE reversal. March cotton futures sank 0.19 cents to 60.52 cents/pound shortly before noon (EST) Tuesday, while the July contract slid 0.30 to 62.00.