Weather news again seems to be weighing on corn futures. Although the grain markets held up surprisingly well in the wake of Tuesday’s bearishly construed WASDE report, prices slipped again overnight. Wire service sources cited the midweek window for plantings bracketed by good rainfall over the Central U.S. for pushing prices lower, since conditions seem very conducive to a large crop at this point. July corn futures slid 2.0 cents to $3.59/bushel Tuesday night, while December declined 1.0 to $3.75.
Soyoil is diverging from modest bean and meal gains. After performing quite poorly in the wake of Tuesday’s WASDE report, soybeans and meal rebounded somewhat overnight. Industry interests reportedly think the reaction was overdone, but worry that large production and the spread of bird flu (thereby potentially reducing demand) will drag the soy complex lower. Tuesday night palm oil weakness weighed on soyoil futures. July soybean futures bounced 3.5 cents to $9.59/bushel in early Wednesday action, while July soyoil inched 0.01 cent higher to 32.98 cents/pound, and July meal rose $1.5 to $304.9/ton.
The wheat markets traded mixed overnight. Tuesday’s USDA numbers seemed bearish for the wheat outlook, with both U.S. and global carryout forecasts topping forecasts. Futures did end lower yesterday, but post-report strength was impressive. Improved moisture conditions across the Plains also seems to bode well for production and ill for prices. Nevertheless, futures traded narrowly mixed Tuesday night, with the price action suggesting firm support is emerging. July CBOT wheat futures climbed 0.5 to $4.8075/bushel soon after sunrise Wednesday, while July KC wheat skidded 1.5 cents to $5.0625/bushel, but July MWE wheat edged up 0.25 to $5.3675.
Cattle futures rebounded from Monday’s losses. Although cattle futures have fluctuated rather widely lately, they’ve actually been confined to a fairly tight range when compared to the huge moves of recent months. At this point traders seem caught between ongoing spot firmness and bearish seasonal expectations. Midday beef strength powered Tuesday’s rebound. Mixed afternoon beef quotes and sideways GLOBEX action suggest a flat opening today. June live cattle futures closed 1.22 cents higher at 151.47 cents/pound Tuesday afternoon, while August cattle advanced 0.85 to 145.65. Meanwhile, August feeder cattle futures plunged 0.97 cents to 216.45 cents/pound, and November feeders tumbled 1.27 to 213.37.
Hog futures also bounced from early Tuesday lows. The Chicago hog market continued struggling in early Tuesday trading as traders worried about recent spot market weakness. However, word from the country improved, with reports of cash and wholesale strength rather clearly driving CME gains. Big afternoon pork gains suggest a strong opening again today. June hog futures advanced 0.77 cents to 85.05 cents/pound as Tuesday’s CME pit session ended, while December rose 0.57 to 70.60.
Cotton futures are trying to bounce from major support. Concerns about the U.S. economy, export demand and much improved moisture conditions in the southern Plains have recently seemed to depress cotton market. However, those losses have pushed the nearby July contract down to the confluence of its 40-day moving average and the 65.00-cent area, which may explain Tuesday night firmness. Still, bulls may need some favorable news before looking to buy more aggressively. July cotton gained 0.04 cents to 65.06 early Wednesday morning, while December futures added 0.03 to 64.86.