Ag markets were mixed again Tuesday night

Corn futures were narrowly mixed Tuesday night. A story indicating that China has rejected about 30% of recent corn shipments due to contamination with an unapproved GMO strain hit the newswires overnight, but there was little fresh news. That probably accounts for the minimal nature of overnight price shifts. March corn futures stalled at $4.2675/bushel early Wednesday morning, while May sagged 0.25 cent to $4.35.

Talk of strong demand is still supporting bean and meal prices. The soy complex also suffered from a general lack of news last night, but the supportive nature of recent reports, especially on the demand side, apparently encouraged fresh buying in the bean and meal pits. Asian palm weakness undercut the oil market. January soybeans rose 2.25 cents to $13.4875/bushel in early Wednesday action, while January soyoil slid 0.14 cents to 39.17 cents/pound, and January soymeal climbed $4.5 to $452.5/ton.

Large supplies continue weighing upon the wheat markets. Little fresh news concerning the wheat outlook emerged Tuesday night, which seemingly left the door open for persistent selling. Again, huge global crops have created a big surplus, which seems likely to grow in early 2014. March CBOT wheat futures dipped 2.25 cents to $6.175/bushel in pre-dawn Wednesday trading, while March KCBT wheat futures drooped 1.25 cents to $6.5925, and March MWE futures were steady at $6.50.

Wholesale weakness probably depressed cattle futures overnight. Sizeable beef price gains apparently boosted the CME cattle market early this week, but choice cutout turned sharply lower yesterday afternoon. That news, along with nearby futures' recent inability to top major technical resistance seemingly set a bearish tone for short-term prospects. February cattle futures edged down 0.07 cents to 132.90 cents/pound just before dawn Wednesday, while April futures stumbled 0.20 cents to 133.85. Meanwhile, January feeder cattle futures lost 0.35 cents to 166.80 cents/pound and March tumbled 0.52 to 165.85.

Resurgent cash prices sparked Tuesday night hog gains. Anticipation of short-run weakness in cash and wholesale prices sent hog futures lower Tuesday. However, the late-afternoon cash and wholesale quotes came in higher than expected, thereby giving CME prices a substantial boost. February hog futures rallied 0.67 cents to 86.32 cents/pound in early Wednesday trading, and June gained 0.47 to 99.37.

Cotton futures seem likely to test support in the days ahead. After rallying strongly through early December, cotton futures have backed away from technical resistance early this week. Mountainous global stockpiles remain a major concern, so emergent resistance isn't terribly surprising. Thus, a test of underlying support now appears likely during the days ahead. March cotton sank 0.35 cents to 82.60 cents/pound just after sunrise (EST) Wednesday, and July cotton slumped 0.35 cents to 81.83.


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