The grain and oilseed markets were neutral-lower ahead of the Fed rate announcement at 1:00 p.m. Corn futures were lower for the third straight session after rising the six previous sessions. Expectations for corn export sales due out this morning are 400,000-600,000 tonnes. The EU advisory firm Strategie Grains has cut EU corn production by 2.3 million tonnes to 57.4 million, 24% less than 2014. According to the WSJ, Federal funds futures showed on Wednesday a 21% chance of a rate cut. The dollar was .22% lower and the Shanghai Composite closed 2.08%lower Thursday, down 39% from the June high. December corn futures dropped 1.75 cents to $3.8425/bushel early Thursday morning, while March moved 1.75 cents lower to $3.955.
Soybean futures were steady-lower early Thursday morning, surprisingly unmoved by bullish FSA data released yesterday. Reuters reported Wednesday that Chinese President Xi intends to buy “several million” tonnes of U.S. soybeans next Thursday when he and his trade delegation visits Iowa. Trade expectations for weekly soybean export sales are .9 to 1.3 million tonnes, 100,000 to 180,000 tonnes of soybean meal, and 0 to 10,000 tonnes of soyoil. November futures were .75 cents lower at $8.865/bushel early Thursday morning, while October soyoil lost .25 cents to 26.43 cents/pound and October meal gained $0.5 to $316.8/ton.
The wheat complex was lower overnight as the macro markets are weighing commodities to start the week. STATS Canada will issue their all-wheat stocks report Thursday with trade estimates falling to 6.5 million tonnes, down 37% from a year ago. The trade awaits the release of export inspections data released mid-morning Monday as well the September WASDE due out a week from this Friday. September CBOT wheat futures lost 3 cents to $4.74/bushel early Monday, while Sep KC wheat fell 1.25 cents to $4.565/bushel, and September MWE dropped 0.5 cents to $4.90.
On continuous nearby basis, live cattle sunk to 15 month lows Wednesday, plunging 2% in a day marked by weakness in most ag commodities, despite a weaker dollar and surging crude oil prices . The October contract dropped well below the 20, 50, 100, and 200-day moving averages as sinking cash values weighed on futures. Boxed beef cutouts were lower with choice down 1.65 cents to 233.49 and select down 0.68 to 225.01. The Cattle on Feed report is due out Friday with some analysts suggesting August placements could be 3% higher than last year. October cattle were 3 cents/pound lower at 137.60 Wednesday, while December cattle lost 2.77 cents to 139.47. October feeder cattle slid 4.5 cents to 188.45 cents/pound Wednesday, while January feeders lost 4.45 at 181.47.
The hog market made its way lower Wednesday with the October contract hitting resistance as it neared the 200-day moving average of 70.21, instead settling above the 100-day moving average of 67.45 and lower by .94% for the day. Despite Tuesday’s surge, lean hogs closed lower Wednesday for the ninth close lower in the last ten sessions. The lean hog index also weakened, falling .7% to 71.44. Cash hogs were 1.54 higer to 66.74 as of 1:30 p.m. Tuesday. October hog futures gained 2.82 cents at 69.37 cents/pound Tuesday, while Dec hogs climbed 1.80 to 63.85.
Cotton futures began the week higher Monday despite Chinese stocks closing lower, perhaps on month-end positioning. The tighter than expected balance sheet for cotton and the drop in the condition rating have given cotton bulls something to talk about as of late but world market problems are now the driver. While the global scene for cotton is largely still plagued by oversupply, the recent bullish data appears to be giving way to world economic and currency struggles, particularly related to Chinese demand fears. December cotton futures lost .13 cents to 63.13 cents/pound Friday, while Mar rose 0.17 cents to 62.85.