Corn futures are beginning the week on a soft note in overnight trading. Friday appeared to be a fairly firm day through most of the session on concerns about delayed planting in Argentina with excessive rains and an unusually large export sale to “unknown destinations” under USDA’s daily export reporting requirements. But a surge of selling pressed futures to losses by the close on concern about weakening economic indicators for Japan, Europe and China. In early trade futures were down about 2 cents across the board with December in the $3.70 area.
Soybeans are starting the week with a negative tone, overnight markets trading lower despite a very strong close on Friday. Export demand is very brisk while farmer selling has dropped off sharply into the holiday season. Better rains for South America, particularly Brazil, are cited as a negative, along with the strong U.S. dollar. The first five contracts are 8-9 cents lower in early trade, with January beans in the $10.30 area.
Wheat futures are just steady to mixed from overnight trading with nearby contracts up against important overhead chart resistance. Fundamental news is also mixed, with export sales beginning to fall behind the pace needed to sustain USDA’s current forecast on a very strong dollar that hurts U.S. competitiveness. But on the positive side for prices, there is concern about potential for winterkill in parts of the U.S. Plains, S. Russia and Ukraine. In overnight trade, CBOT and MGE wheat were up a penny or two while KC futures were a penny or two weaker with December in $6.06 area.
Cattle futures will likely be on the defensive to start the week. They closed firm Friday on surprisingly brisk demand given very high retail prices and the holiday season that typically sees a slump as consumers prepare Thanksgiving turkey instead. But the latest Cattle on Feed report may give market bulls pause as numbers came in stronger than anticipated in placements on feed and October marketings a little lighter than expected which leads to worry numbers might be backing up in feedlots. December cattle will start the week in the $171 area.
Futures may start the week a little soft side in light holiday trading ahead of turkey day on Thursday. But slaughter data has been consistently lighter than what would have been anticipated based on most recent Hogs & Pigs Report data showing numbers only 2% below a year ago while we’ve had two straight weeks of slaughter about 5% under last year.