CORN: Corn futures are finding some solid buyer support in the early trade today, with Sep up 4-1/4 to 3.45, Dec corn is up 3-3/4 to 3.58, and Mar corn is up 3-3/4 to 3.71. The majority of the buyer support today was due to a bit of a surprise on yesterday’s Crop Progress report. U.S. corn maturity was seen at 11% vs 6% a week ago, 33% last year, and 24% on average. The crop conditions were the interesting part, with 55% of the corn rated good to excellent vs 58% last week and the average trade guess at 58%. The IL corn crop conditions dropped 8%. The drop in condition is likely sparking some short covering, especially ahead of Thursday’s Supply & Demand report. Dec corn has traded as high today as 3.59-3/4 and the small jump in prices may turn momentum back higher. Prices are still oversold and could bounce given some positive fundamental developments. Speculative funds were thought to have sold about 5,000 contracts of corn yesterday.

SOYBEANS: Soybean futures are slightly higher today, as prices fall towards the low end of the day’s range. Sep beans are up 1/2 cent to 8.45-1/2, Nov beans are up 2-1/4 to 8.60, and Jan beans are up 2 cents to 8.74. Yesterday’s Crop Progress report showed soybean conditions steady with last week at 55% and 92% of the U.S. soybean crop is setting pods vs 86% a week ago, 100% last year and 99% on average. Still, 10% of IL soybeans have not set pods, 16% of IN, 11% of KS, 11% of MI, 16% of MO, 11% of OH, and 15% of WI still have not set pods. Near-term weather forecasts look conducive for an extended growing season, but temperatures will likely need to be monitored well into October. Nov beans briefly tested their overhead 10-day moving average resistance level this morning at 8.64-1/2 but have not been able to break through it. Momentum indicators are pointing mostly sideways, but Stochastics are beginning to turn higher. Speculative funds were thought to have sold 1,000 contracts of beans yesterday.

 WHEAT: Wheat markets are moving higher again today, finding solid follow through on yesterday’s gains. Dec Chi wheat is up 2-1/2 cents to 4.77, Dec KC wheat is up 2-1/4 cents to 4.00-1/4, and Dec spring wheat is up 5-3/4 cents to 5.02-1/2. Persistent rains in the northern Plains are keeping spring wheat harvest delayed and could impact quality. Large export totals from Ukraine and Russia last month indicate a big harvest from the Black Sea Region is contributing to rising inventories. The USDA is currently expecting global wheat supplies to be at an all-time high this year. Dec Chi wheat made its first close above its 20-day moving average resistance level yesterday since June 27. Momentum indicators are pointing higher and prices are finding additional follow through today. KC wheat futures also made impressive closes yesterday and are finding follow through today and spring wheat futures are punching through near-term resistance at the 10-day moving average levels. Speculative funds are thought to have bought about 7,000 contracts of Chi wheat yesterday.

CATTLE: Cattle markets are mixed to mostly higher today, with Oct lives up 15 cents to 94.35, Dec lives are up 2 cents to 99.20, and Feb lives are up 17 cents to 106.25. Oct feeders are down 17 cents to 129.65 and Nov feeders are steady at 128.80. While prices are not exactly springing off of yesterday’s lows, cattle are at least stabilizing near long-term support. A few feed lots caved to lower cash trade yesterday though prices should creep higher by the end of the week. Slaughter is beginning to lag behind last year’s pace which may contribute to the weaker cash trade in futures markets. Oct lives have traded within a range today of just 1.05 and are still deeply oversold. Oct feeders found support at their lower Bollinger band early in the morning and have been moving closer to positive territory.

HOGS: Hog markets are sharply lower in disappointing trade so far today. Oct hogs are down 2.20 to 60.40, Dec hogs are down 1.80 to 58.15, and Feb hogs are down 2.62 to 65.65. Yesterday’s closes near the low end of the session range has sparked some additional follow-through selling today. Domestic pork prices continue to slide due to the surge in pork inventory and an export market that is not able to handle the increased supplies, at least at this time. Still, China’s pork shortage will not change anytime soon and imports from the U.S. or otherwise will likely increase in a big way down the road. Traders will be monitoring the U.S./China trade situation very closely.


Carol Tillmann

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