Corn futures slipped to a slightly lower close on Monday. The market was higher much of the day, but spillover pressure from wheat, strength in the dollar and weakness in crude oil pushed futures lower. USDA will update planting progress numbers this afternoon and trade expectations are for it to be around 45% complete. However, rainfall over the weekend and forecasts for more rain will likely mean slower progress this week. May closed 3/4 of a cent lower at $3.52 1/4 and July ended 1 1/2 cents lower at $3.59 1/2.
Soybean futures closed lower on Monday. Light profit-taking pressured prices following the recent rally to three months highs. Strength in the dollar and weakness in crude oil were bearish factors. Weekly export inspections reported this morning of 8 million bushels were at the low end of expectations. USDA is expected to report the first soybean planting number for the season this afternoon. May was 1 1/4 cents lower at $9.98 3/4 and July ended 1 cent lower at $10.09.
Wheat futures were strongly lower on Monday. Fund selling pushed prices lower after some initial technical buying strength. Strength in the dollar and disappointing weekly export inspections were also bearish factors. USDA reported last week’s shipments at 9.9 million bushels versus trade expectations of 15-18 million. CBOT May closed 17 1/4 cents lower at $4.76, KCBT May ended 15 1/4 cents lower at $4.90 1/2 and MGE May fell 13 1/2 cents lower at $5.13 1/4.
Cattle futures traded higher on Monday. Higher beef prices and the supportive Cattle on Feed report pushed futures higher. Choice beef prices at midday were up $1.38, hitting the highest level since July, 2008. ON Friday afternoon, USDA reported March placements at up 3% from year-ago, but traders were looking for it to be up 7%. April closed 30 cents higher at $99.53 and June was 68 cents higher at $95.50.
Lean hog futures closed strongly lower on Monday. Profit-taking developed today following the rally to new contract highs in most months last week. Futures turned lower despite firm cash markets. Packer margins remain favorable despite the 38 cent drop in pork cutouts on Friday. Cash bids were firm today as marketing ready hog supplies are tight. June ended 90 cents lower at $84.28 and July was $1.23 lower at $84.73.