Corn futures were firmer overnight following the long weekend and ahead of Friday’s WASDE. The Eastern Corn Belt received rains over the holiday, making the weather outlook quite ideal for the remainder of the growing season. Fund short covering and positioning may help futures this week but focus will remain keenly on Chinese economic growth. The Shanghai Composite closed 2.9% higher Tuesday and the Shenzhen Composite closed 3.8% higher. U.S. stock futures were up 1.6% and the U.S. Dollar was lower by .08%. A Bloomberg survey shows the average trade estimate for yields at 166.5 bu/ac with a range of 161.0 to 170.5 bu/ac. December corn futures were 4.5 cents higher to $3.54/bushel early Tuesday, while March was 4.5 cents higher at $3.79.
The soybean complex was firmer early Tuesday morning on rebounding Chinese stocks and pre-WASDE positioning. The crop condition rating for soybeans is expected to fall 1-2 points from last week’s good to excellent rating of 63%. The report is due out at 3:00 pm today. According to a Bloomberg Survery, that average trade estimate for soybean yield in the upcoming WASDE is 46.1 bu/ac with a range of 45.0 to 47.1 bu/ac, and the average estimate for production is 3.841 billion bushels with a range of 3.735 billion to 3.935 billion. China imported 7.78 million tonnes of soybeans in August, up 29% year-over-year but down 18.1% from July’s record shipments. November futures were 7.5 cents higher to $8.74/bushel early Tuesday, while October soyoil gained .49 cents to 27.02 cents/pound and October meal was $0.8 higher at $308.90/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.
Live cattle futures traded lower Friday along with the broader livestock complex. Boxed beef cutouts were lower, with choice down .16 to 240.81 and select down .59 to 228.44. Fundamentals for cattle are generally positive approaching fall/winter as inventory declines and demand ramps up. Cattle slaughter is estimated at 109,000 head today, compared to 105,000 last week, and 119,000 a year ago. October cattle were 1.12 cents lower at 140.47 cents/pound Friday, while December cattle were 1.05 cents lower at 142.77. October feeder cattle were 1.65 cents lower, closing at 195.70 cents/pound while January feeders lost 1.60 at 186.75.
Nearby CME hogs futures retreated Friday for the second session lower. With Labor Day nearly upon us, cash hogs values were 0.84 cents lower to 68.02 cent/pound, as buyer interests slows until the next uptick for National Pork Month: October. Hog supply traditionally shifts higher in the fall/winter due the timing of gestational cycles, giving way to seasonally lower prices. Daily hog slaughter came in at 401,000 head, compared to 402,000 last week and 412,000 a year ago. October hog futures lost 0.30 cents at 69.15 cents/pound Friday, while May hogs dropped 0.25 cents to 76.40.
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.