Corn futures are trading mixed at midday. In this month’s supply and demand update USDAs left 2011/12 corn ending stocks unchanged from last month at 801 million bushels. Expectations were for about an 80 million bushel cut. Corn planting progress is racing ahead of normal at 7% as of Sunday compared to only 2% for the five-year average. Strength in the soybean market is underpinning corn prices. May corn is 1 cent higher at $6.50. and December is 1 1/4 cents higher at $5.51 1/2.
Soybean futures are trading higher at midsession. USDA released its monthly analysis of global soybean supply/demand. USDA reduced its forecast of world soybean production by another 5 million tonnes to 240 million. USDA cut its forecasts for Argentine and Brazilian production and increased its forecasts for U.S. exports and the crush. USDA forecasts the Brazilian crop at 66 million tonnes while a new forecast today from the Brazilian government dropped it further to 65.6 million. The May contract is up 15 cents at $14.46 and November is 9 cents higher at $13.91.
Wheat futures are mixed in midsession trade Tuesday. USDA lowered projected U.S. ending stocks to 793 million bu., almost exactly the average pre-report trade estimate and was thus price neutral. However, USDA lowered projected global wheat ending stocks by more than 3 million tons, more than three times the reduction expected by the trade. CBOT and KCBOT futures are higher as a result. MGE futures, however, lost early gains and are trading lower due to the very fast planting pace, which traders know often means actual acreage exceeding planting intentions released on Mar. 30th. CBOT May is 4 1/2 cents higher at $6.47 1/2; KBOT May is 3 1/4 cents higher at $6.63 1/4, and MGE May is 2 1/2 cents lower at $8.44 1/2.
Cattle futures are trading mixed at midday. After moving higher in the overnight trade, cattle futures turned lower during the day session in response to USDA’s monthly supply and demand update indicating larger beef imports and a slight cut in exports. Support stems from higher beef prices on Monday and the fact that futures are at a discount to recent cash trade. June cattle futures are 28 cents lower at $119.10 while August is 13 cents higher at $118.50.
Lean hog futures are lower at midday on Tuesday. Markets reversed following Monday’s gains after cash hog prices and pork prices both declined again on Monday. Futures prices have generally moved higher over the past week and a half with traders getting optimistic about the seasonal upturn in pork demand and in hog prices. But so far, the cash market has not been able to sustain any kind of rally. Cash hog prices reached their high for the year back in January and have struggled ever since. Currently cash prices are $11 below year ago levels and are near the low so far in 2012. The trend in futures is still up, but some improvement in the cash market is desperately needed. The May contract is down $1.08 at $92.93 and June is 48 cents lower at $93.13.