Ag markets moved generally higher on Tuesday

Corn futures were part of the general agricultural market advance in response to ongoing U.S. dollar weakness. For example, the long-standing U.S. dollar index was trading at its lowest levels since late February on Tuesday afternoon, thereby increasing the value of dollar-denominated commodities on the international markets. Tight old crop tightness and concerns about the weather outlook may have supported the corn market as well. July corn futures surged 9.5 cents to $6.595/bushel at the Tuesday close, while December rose 4.75 at $5.5075.

Soybean futures also appeared to benefit from greenback weakness Tuesday, but traders also cited the tight old crop situation for boosting the nearby July contract. The new crop situation is also rather tenuous due to weather concerns and delayed plantings, which may partially explain the gains posted by deferred futures. July soybean futures soared 28.75 cents to $15.405/bushel by its Tuesday settlement, while July soyoil edged down 0.03 cents to 48.04 cents/pound, and July soybean meal leapt $15.1 to $463.4/ton.

The general agricultural market advance also carried the wheat market higher Tuesday. Again, U.S. dollar weakness probably played a role in the rise, as did concerns about the size of the forthcoming winter and spring wheat crops, since Great Plains weather has not been particularly cooperative during the first half of 2013. July CBOT wheat futures closed 7.0 cents higher at $6.9675/bushel Tuesday afternoon, while July KCBT wheat advanced 4.0 to $7.30, and July MGE futures rallied 4.25 cents to $8.1575.

After struggling to rebound Monday night, CME live cattle futures belatedly surged in response to the wholesale strength indicated on the Monday afternoon beef report. That apparently improved industry confidence about the likely outcome of cash trading later this week and during the weeks ahead, as indicated by the strong futures performance Tuesday. U.S. dollar weakness may also have encouraged bulls. June cattle advanced 1.12 cents to 120.32 cents/pound as trading wound down Tuesday, while December lifted 1.05 to 125.47. August feeder cattle futures climbed 1.25 cents to 144.67 cents/pound, and November surged 1.05 cents to 150.35.

Optimism about the short-term outlook dominated the hog pit again Tuesday, with the July contract once again proving most responsive. The expiring June future had jumped 1.07 cents to 100.27 cents/pound at the daily close, despite the fact that it expires Friday and the CME lean hog index is currently estimated at 97.96 cents/pound. There was no confirmation of the Monday morning rumor of resurgent Chinese export interest. June hog futures spiked 1.07 cents to 100.27 cents/pound Tuesday afternoon, while December rose just 0.10 cents to 80.85.


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