Ag markets moved generally higher Monday night

News of a large Korean sale seemed to boost corn prices Monday night. Reduced Black Sea tensions seemed to undercut corn and the other crop markets Monday, but prices bounced modestly in overnight action. That may have partially reflected strength spilling over from the wheat and soy complexes. However, yellow grain prices very likely got a boost from news of a sizeable purchase of U.S. and South American corn early this morning as well. May corn gained 3.0 cents to $4.82/bushel Monday night, while December added 2.5 to $4.845.

The soy complex seemingly posted a technical rebound in the early morning hours. Soybeans slipped in Monday evening trading, which may partially reflected Asian palm weakness and its negative impact upon oil prices. However, beans and meal rebounded strongly in early trading; little pertinent news was evident, thereby suggesting the bounce was technically inspired. May soybeans surged 13.5 cents to $14.0525/bushel in pre-dawn Tuesday action, while May soyoil dipped 0.05 cents to 41.84 cents/pound, and May soymeal climbed $7.2 at $453.8/ton.

Reports credited Great Plains dryness for boosting wheat futures overnight. Persistent tensions associated with the Black Sea situation likely supported the wheat markets last night, but wire service sources mainly cited the dryness that's dominating the southern Plains and some areas of the Midwest for boosting golden grain prices. Winter wheat won't grow well without moisture. May CBOT wheat futures rose 3.5 cents to $6.78/bushel early Tuesday morning, while May KCBT wheat futures bounced 4.0 cents to $7.475 and May MWE futures moved up 5.5 to $7.2975.

Divergent beef quotes seemingly caused similar cattle futures activity. CME live cattle traders are very likely focusing upon the outcome of this week's cash trading, so they're keeping an eye upon wholesale developments for clues as to the cattle/beef situation. Choice cutout values jumped Monday, but the select cuts posted a modest decline. That may explain the mixed trading seen overnight. April cattle futures inched up 0.10 cents to 145.12 cents/pound just before dawn Tuesday, while August skidded 0.15 cents to 135.27. Meanwhile, April feeder cattle fell 0.30 cents to 177.67 cents/pound, and August sagged 0.05 to 179.85.

Hog futures continued their big surge again Monday night. Cash hog and wholesale pork values resumed their late-winter spike Monday. Yesterday's big futures gains reflected that strength, as did the follow-through seen in overnight action. The market is extremely overbought technically, but there is nothing that says it can't continue rising. April hogs jumped 0.90 cents to 122.60 cents/pound in early Tuesday trading, while June leapt 1.15 to 131.92.

Cotton futures are threatening to break out to the upside. As with soybeans, the cotton market posted significant overnight gains last night despite a general lack of fresh news. Some might talk of diminishing old-crop Chinese supplies, but the size of Monday's big equity surge may have spurred some belated buying as well. It will be very interesting to see if the rally can be sustained. May cotton advanced 0.62 cents to 92.65 cents/pound just after sunrise (EDT) Tuesday, but December cotton edged down 0.08 to 79.92.


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