Ag markets moved mostly lower Monday night

Good harvest conditions are still depressing corn prices. The weekly Crop Progress report held few surprises for corn traders and didn't seem to affect prices overnight. Indeed, prices continued sliding in apparent anticipation of a surge in harvesting, since weather forecasts point to warm, dry weather over the short run. December corn futures dipped 1.5 cents to $3.2875/bushel Monday night, while May slid 1.25 to $3.50.

Diminished bean conditions seemed to support the soy complex. The Crop Progress report indicated a 1% drop in U.S. soybean conditions to 71% good to excellent. And while that remains historically high, it did fall short of industry expectations. That news, along with overnight palm gains in Asia, appeared to boost prices somewhat. November soybean futures stabilized at $9.3825/bushel early Tuesday morning, while October soyoil bounced 0.25 cents to 32.25 cents/pound, and October soymeal skidded $0.3 to $319.1/ton.

Wheat markets moved mostly lower. The crop condition report showed the spring wheat harvest nearing completion and winter wheat plantings well underway, but the results didn't seem particularly important to traders. Ultimately, the glutted global situation is apparently exerting persistent pressure upon relatively high domestic prices. December CBOT wheat slipped 1.0 cent at $4.7575/bushel in predawn Tuesday trading, while December KC wheat sagged 0.5 cent to $5.5975/bushel, and December MWE wheat lost 0.5 to $5.3625.

Short-term pessimism is again weighing on cattle futures. Cash cattle prices declined late last week, thereby sending a negative signal to CME traders. That fact, as well as ongoing wholesale price slippage, makes Chicago traders think they'll see more of the same through late September. October live cattle futures dropped 0.40 cents to 155.10 cents/pound as Tuesday dawned over Chicago, while December futures sank 0.35 to 158.30. Meanwhile, October feeder futures slumped 0.37 cents to 228.90 cents/pound, and January feeders stumbled 0.37 to 221.37.

Cash losses are stifling rally attempts in the hog market. Pork prices rose significantly again Monday, but CME bulls couldn't build upon that strength last night. The fact that the recent cash market rally slowed last week and was marked by a substantial decline yesterday almost surely accounts for the overnight slippage. October hogs declined 0.20 cents to 107.10 cents/pound early Tuesday morning, while December fell 0.37 to 95.32.

The Crop Progress data may be supporting cotton futures. The USDA stated the cotton condition rating slightly below last week and indicated a relatively slow harvest pace on Monday's Crop Progress report. Those developments seemingly played a role in the modest ICE bounce posted overnight. December cotton futures rose 0.21 cents to 62.80 cents/pound shortly after sunrise (EDT) Tuesday, while March futures gained 0.29 cents to 62.24.


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