Thursday's Closing Grain and Livestock Futures
Dec. corn closed at $4.61, down 8 and 1/2 cents
Nov. soybeans closed at $13.67 and 1/2, up 15 cents
Oct. soybean meal closed at $434.60, up $6.60
Oct. soybean oil closed at 43.26, down 37 points
Dec. wheat closed at $6.40 and 1/4, down 6 cents
Oct. live cattle closed at $125.22, down 77 cents
Oct. lean hogs closed at $89.40, up 27 cents
Oct. crude oil closed at $108.37, up $1.14
Dec. cotton closed at 82.30, down 45 points
Sep. Class III milk closed at $18.03, up 3 cents
Sep. gold closed at $1,373.10, down $16.80
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 14,937.48, up 6.61 points
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Market News and ReCap
Soybeans were higher on commercial buying and oversold signals. There has been some rain in some key growing areas, but much more is needed with many five day outlooks generally pretty dry. Past that – commodities and the broader market both remain tentative about potential action in Syria. Soybean meal was up and bean oil was down on the adjustment of product spreads. USDA’s weekly export sales report is out Friday at 8:30 AM Eastern/7:30 AM Central. Soybeans are pegged at 500,000 to 925,000 tons, meal is seen at 100,000 to 250,000 tons, and oil is placed at 0 to 25,000 tons.
Corn was lower on technical and fund selling. Early yields have been better than expected in some areas and at least for now, it doesn’t look like there’ll be an early frost. However, part of the crop could still use some rain and harvest really has yet to get to some prime production areas. Ethanol futures were mixed. South Korea’s Nonghyup Feed Inc. is tendering for 140,000 tons of optional origin corn. Weekly U.S. corn exports are expected to be between 350,000 and 675,000 tons.
The wheat complex was lower on technical and fund selling, along with spillover from corn and the dollar. The U.S. spring harvest continues to move forward, winter wheat planting conditions have improved in some areas, and the world crop looks good. Japan bought another 67,923 tons of U.S. milling wheat, along with 48,427 tons from Canada. The Canadian purchase was all western red spring, while the U.S. was split between 25,124 tons U.S. dark northern spring, 22,513 tons U.S. hard red winter, and 20,286 tons U.S. western white. Tokyo also picked up 59,350 tons of feed wheat in sell-buy-sell activity. South Korea’s Nonghyup Feed Inc. issued a tender for 60,000 tons of optional origin feed wheat. Bangladesh purchased 50,000 tons of optional origin wheat, while tendering for another 50,000 tons. European wheat futures were weak. Weekly U.S. wheat sales are estimated at 450,000 to 600,000 tons.
Cattle country remained quiet on Thursday afternoon with significant trade volume delayed until Friday. A few bids were reported at 121.00 live and 194.00 to 195.00 dressed. While packers appear to be somewhat short-bought, buyers are hesitant in the face of lackluster beef demand and negative margins. Asking prices are around 125.00 plus in the South and 198.00 plus in the North. The kill was estimated at 125,000 head, 2,000 more than last week, but even with last year.
Boxed beef cutout values were steady to weak on moderate demand and moderate offerings. Choice beef was down .70 at 195.86, and select was .22 lower at 181.91.
Live cattle contracts on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange settled 15 to 77 points lower. Cattle futures weakened through the morning trade with buyers quickly backing away from the market. Additional support never materialized as a lack of interest in the corm market made it hard to draw additional buyer interest back into the market. October settled .77 lower at 125.22, and December was down .77 at 129.12.
Feeder cattle ended the session 10 to 60 points lower as aggressive pressure in the live cattle futures overpowered additional pressure in the corn prices. What started as light to moderate support in the nearby contracts led to moderate to aggressive losses. Trade volume was sluggish. September ended the session .27 lower at 156.75, and October was down .45 at 158.80.
Feeder cattle receipts at the Huss Platte Valley Auction, Kearney, Nebraska totaled 3786 head on Wednesday. Compared to two weeks ago, yearling steers and heifers were 2.00 to 4.00 higher. Steer calves weighing less than 500 pounds were 10.00 higher, over 500 pounds fully steady to 2.00 higher. Heifer calves were steady to 4.00 higher, with 500 pound offerings trading 8.00 higher. 281 head of feeder steers averaging 774 pounds traded at 163.44 per hundredweight. 229 heifers weighing 723 brought 156.17.
Lean hogs finished the session 27 higher to 40 lower. Hogs turned mixed after giving back aggressive gains through the morning. October and December contracts were able to hold on to light to moderate gains, but compared to gains over 1.30 per hundredweight traders quickly backed away from the market. Moderate to active liquidation developed through the second half of 2014 as concern mounts that lower corn prices could lead to herd expansion. October settled .27 higher at 89.40, and December is up .07 at 85.92.
There was moderate market activity with moderate demand in the direct hog trade on Thursday. Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota trade were down .44 at 89.90 on the carcass basis, the West was .24 lower at 89.79, and the East is .35 lower at 86.34. Missouri direct base carcass meat price closed steady from 81.00 to 82.00. Terminal hogs were fully steady from 56.00 to 66.00 live.
The pork carcass value FOB plant was down 1.11 at 94.76. All primal cuts with the exception of hams and picnics were lower.
Last week Iowa barrows and gilts averaged 270.2 pounds, 1.4 pounds lighter than the previous week and only 2 pounds heavier than 2012. The hot temperatures of late summer are making a production difference.
The Thursday hog kill was estimated at 431,000 head, 2,000 more than last week, but 3,000 less than last year.
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