Ahead of the Open (VIP) -- May 8, 2013

May 8, 2013 03:15 AM
 

Corn futures are called to open 1 to 4 cents lower on expectations of a pickup in the planting pace.

  • Corn futures were choppy overnight, but ended the session slightly lower on improved weather forecasts.
  • Yesterday's NWS 6-10 day forecast signals producers will be able to actively get into the fields and catch up on corn plantings.
  • South Korea have purchased 69,000 MT of South American corn. Trader sources say Asian buyers are scrambling to secure purchases due to concerns about planting delays in the U.S. Corn Belt.
  • Gulf corn basis is steady for immediate delivery but has risen by a penny for delivery in June to stand 78 cents above July futures.

 

Soybean futures are called to open 1 to 5 cents higher amid spreading with corn.

  • Soybean futures ended the overnight session 1 to 9 cents higher, supported by outside markets and spreading with corn.
  • The U.S. dollar index is weaker this morning due to upbeat German and Chinese economic data.
  • According to custom's data, China imported 3.98 MMT of soybeans in April, up 3.6% from March but 18.4% below year-ago.
  • Meanwhile, the spread of bird flu in China has lowered feed demand and traders expect its soybean imports to be lighter through at least spring.
  • But China's demand for new-crop U.S. soybeans is strong. This morning USDA announced a 115,000 MT sale for 2013-14.
  • But soybean futures are enjoying spreading with corn as a more favorable near-term weather outlook lowers the risk of corn acres being switched to soybeans.

 

Wheat futures are called to open mixed after a choppy overnight session.

  • Wheat futures ended the overnight session mixed, with nearbys slightly lower on spillover from corn.
  • Positive outside markets are helping to limit pressure on wheat futures. The U.S. dollar index is weaker on positive Chinese trade data and crude oil and gold are higher.
  • But improved rainfall chances for the Central and Southern Plains are limiting buying interest in the wheat pit. Traders are hopeful that due to the delayed maturity of the crop, late-season rains will provide it a boost.

 

Live cattle futures are called slightly lower on followthrough from yesterday's losses.

  • Live cattle futures ended yesterday slightly lower on concerns about demand.
  • While Choice boxed beef values firmed 93 cents yesterday to return above $201 per cwt. and Select values improved 65 cents, movement of 147 loads is considered light.
  • Packers have not yet begun bidding for cattle and feedlots want steady to firmer bids due to lofty beef prices. As a result, cash trade will likely be delayed until Friday afternoon.
  • Slight weakness in the corn market could help firm feeder cattle futures this morning.

 

Lean hog futures are called to open steady to weaker on concerns about the cash market.

  • Lean hog futures ended yesterday with gains in all but the June contract, which opens the door to profit-taking given expectations for weaker cash hog bids today.
  • Packer profit margins moved deeper into the red yesterday as pork cutout values slipped another 16 cents.
  • Traders are focused on narrowing the premium nearbys hold to the cash index, which stands at $88.80.
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