The crop markets moved mostly lower again Wednesday, with benign U.S. growing conditions reportedly being the main bearish factor. Stock market weakness and renewed U.S. dollar strength don’t bode particularly well for demand either. Ultimately, prospects for the 2015 U.S. corn crops look quite strong, with most other considerations taking a back seat at this point. September futures edged upward today after dipping below the $4.00/bushel level overnight, but one has to suspect want to force a December futures test of that level in the near future. September corn futures declined 3.75 cents to $4.0275/bushel at their Wednesday settlement, while December lost 4.0 to $4.135.
Soy complex trading turned mixed as Wednesday passed. As in the grain markets, the prospect of very favorable growing weather continue weighing on new crop prices, with deferred futures posting across-the-board losses as a result. However, country markets proved quite firm, with news sources citing slow farmer sales and tightening old-crop supplies, which rather clearly translated into modest gains in nearby soybean and meal futures. Fresh energy market losses weighed on soyoil. August soybeans edged 2.0 cents higher to $10.2075/bushel in late Wednesday action, while August soyoil dropped 0.58 cents to 31.35 cents/pound and August meal bounced $3.6 to $363.5/ton.
The wheat markets remained under downward pressure. Traders reportedly think conditions in the waterlogged eastern Corn Belt are improving somewhat, thereby favoring an acceleration of the SRW harvest in that region. Good prospects for the spring wheat crop also seem to be weighing on grain quotes. The fact that U.S. wheat continues being shut out of foreign tenders isn’t helping the bullish cause. September CBOT wheat futures fell 8.0 cents to $5.1675/bushel at Wednesday’s close, while Sep KC wheat sank 6.75 cents to $5.1225/bushel, and September MWE tumbled 8.5 cents to $5.48.
Today’s early hog market surge seemed to spill over into the cattle pit for a time, but bulls proved unable to sustain the advance. Ideas that consumer demand for pork may be firming and the supply of market-ready swine tightening sparked a bullish hog futures opening today, which then spilled over into the cattle market. However, bears returned in force when it became rather apparent that bullish cattle news remains scarce. The cattle charts aren’t encouraging either. August cattle ended Wednesday having fallen 0.65 cents to 144.50 cents/pound, while December futures dove 0.80 to 148.97. Meanwhile, August feeder cattle futures declined 0.70 cents to 212.37 cents/pound, and November feeders dropped 1.00 to 207.27.
Early news that Iowa-Southern Minnesota hog weights fell 2.0 pounds/head last week suggested reduced pork production and tightening supplies, whereas Tuesday’s big pork gains implied resurgent demand. The fact that nearby August futures blasted through resistance associated with its pivotal 40-day moving average encouraged buying as well. August hog futures leapt 2.65 cents to 78.52 cents/pound Wednesday afternoon, while December jumped 2.62 cents to 62.37.