Corn futures firmed despite seemingly bearish WASDE results. The corn market began Tuesday under modest pressure after the Crop Progress report indicated another big planting surge last week. The monthly USDA WASDE (Supply/Demand) report seemed likely to exert even more downward pressure, especially the forecast 2015/16 global carry-out figure. Nevertheless, futures traded firmly through the close, possibly due to unwinding of soy/corn spreads. July corn futures settled up 0.5 cent to $3.61/bushel Tuesday, while December added 0.5 to $3.76.
The soy complex reacted badly to the USDA numbers. Soybean and product futures moved generally higher prior to the late-morning release of the WASDE report. Crude and palm gains continued supporting soyoil prices, while position-squaring seemed to push beans and meal a bit higher as well. That set the stage for a bearish market reaction when today’s report was released, with large carryout projections for 2015/16 apparently sinking prices across the board. July soybean futures dove 18.5 cents to $9.555/bushel at Tuesday’s CBOT close, while July soyoil sank 0.22 cents to 32.97 cents/pound, and July meal slumped $6.8 to $303.4/ton.
The wheat markets couldn’t sustain their post-report bounce. Monday’s Crop Progress report also weighed on wheat futures Monday night, but those moved higher in early Tuesday trading. Active short-covering and U.S. dollar weakness seemingly powered the gains. The late-morning WASDE report seemingly presaged further pressure on the wheat sector, since both U.S. and global carry-out forecasts topped expectations. Wheat futures actually rallied in response, but bulls couldn’t sustain the advance. July CBOT wheat futures slipped 0.5 to $4.805/bushel in late Tuesday action, while July KC wheat skidded 1.0 cents to $5.0775/bushel, and July MWE wheat edged 0.25 lower to $5.365.
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 seemed to power today’s rebound. 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 lows. The Chicago hog market continued struggling early this morning as traders worried about recent signs of spot market weakness. However, word from the country improved, with reports of cash and wholesale strength rather clearly powering CME gains. 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.