Tuesday's Closing Grain and Livestock Futures
Mar. corn closed at $4.31 and 1/2, down 3 cents
Jan. soybeans closed at $13.39, up 12 and 1/4 cents
Jan. soybean meal closed at $452.50, up $5.60
Jan. soybean oil closed at 37.40, down 17 points
Mar. wheat closed at $5.79 and 1/4, up 5 and 3/4 cents
Feb. live cattle closed at $137.65, up $1.05
Feb. lean hogs closed at $86.00, up 62 cents
Feb. crude oil closed at $92.59, up 79 cents
Mar. cotton closed at 83.73, up 5 points
Jan. Class III milk closed at $20.72, up 6 cents
Mar. gold closed at $1,245.80, down $5.70
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 16,373.86, up 115.92 points
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Agri Commodities Market News Review
Soybeans were higher on commercial and technical buying. There was no real fresh news, but the outside markets were supportive and the near term supply remains tight. Conditions in Brazil are generally good for development and harvest, but parts of Argentina will see heat stress this week. Soybean meal was higher and bean oil was lower on the adjustment of product spreads. The National Oilseed Processors Association’s December member crush report is out Wednesday and, on average, analysts via Dow Jones Newswires see the crush at 164.01 million bushel.
Corn was lower on commercial and fund selling. Even with last week’s bullish supply surprises from the USDA, there’s a lot of corn available and the recent gains have led to an increase in farmer selling. Past that – corn’s also keeping an eye on South America, while also watching domestic and export demand. Ethanol futures were lower.
The wheat complex was higher, with Kansas City leading the way up on commercial and technical buying, in addition to the lower dollar. There was no real fresh news for wheat either, but contracts were due for a bounce after being in a downtrend since mid-December. Past that – the trade’s watching the export market and U.S. crop development weather, with dry conditions in some key growing areas. Japan is tendering for 179,600 tons of milling wheat.
The cash cattle trade remained quiet on Tuesday afternoon with bids and asking prices poorly defined. Buyers appear to be in no hurry to face the necessity of spending more money for live cattle. Ready numbers continue to tighten, possibly forcing yet another round of aggressive packer spending later this week. A few asking prices are around 141.00 to 142.00 in the South and 225.00 plus in the North according to DTN. The kill totaled 120,000 head, 13,000 more than last week, but 8,000 less than a year ago.
Boxed beef cutout values end the day sharply higher on moderate demand and light to moderate offerings. Choice boxed beef was up 4.10 at 221.04, and select was 4.59 higher at 219.35.
Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle contracts settled 25 to 105 higher. Cattle futures renewed their aggressive tone seen over the last couple of weeks. February led the charge higher. Other nearby contracts posted aggressive strong gains, but didn’t break the triple digit level. Sharply higher boxed beef values at midday were credited with much of the support. February settled 1.05 higher at 137.65, and April was up .72 at 137.80.
Feeder cattle ended the session 25 to 80 points higher on losses in the corn market as well as the gains in the February live cattle futures. The continued gains in the boxed beef values created additional optimism through the complex. January settled .77 higher at 168.60, and March was up .35 at 166.82.
Feeder cattle receipts at the Oklahoma National Stockyards totaled 13,500 head on Monday. Compared to last week feeder steers were steady. Feeder heifers trended steady to 2.00 higher. Steer and heifer calves were steady to 3.00 higher. With the most advance on the lighter weights, the demand was moderate to good for feeder cattle and good for the calves. 251 feeder steers medium and large 1 averaging 676 pounds brought 174.97 per hundredweight. 350 heifers weighing 630 averaged 165.08.
Lean hog contracts finished 20 to 62 points higher on the firming wholesale pork values at midday and spillover support from the cattle and beef complex. Significantly lower cash prices in the morning report weighed on futures especially the deferred issues. February settled .62 higher at 86.00 and April was up .30 at 90.67.
There was moderate hog market activity and demand on Tuesday afternoon. Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota direct trade closed 1.04 higher with a weighted average of 78.71 on a carcass basis, the West was 1.01 higher at 78.33, and the East was down .92 at 75.17. Missouri direct base carcass meat price closed steady from 73.00 to 75.00. Terminal hogs were steady with an instance of .50 lower from 51.00 to 60.00.
The pork value FOB plant was 2.73 higher at 85.09 with all primals higher led by bellies, ribs and picnics.
As expected, increased buying interest after the holidays moved the ham market a few dollars higher last week. As end-users begin to make final decisions on hams for Easter, demand is expected to build over the next five to six weeks, probably propelling ham prices back into the mid-to-upper $70 area by mid-February.
Hog slaughter was estimated at 425,000 head, 52,000 more than last week, but 3,000 less than a year ago.
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