Price action: Corn futures opened mixed, firmed slightly during the trading day and then slumped near the close to finish near their daily lows and fractionally higher. Futures closed marginally lower.
Fundamental analysis: Futures got light support on position evening as some traders are choosing to close out positions in the absence of export data from USDA. Trade sources suggest increased buying interest by Asian feedmakers due to the decrease in prices coupled with the decline in the U.S. dollar is occurring. Additionally, rains have moved into the Midwest and are forecast to linger into the weekend, which will slow the onset of harvest. But traders were unwilling to carry positions overnight due to the lack of official export reporting services from USDA and took profits just ahead of the close.
Technical analysis: December futures remain bearish following the posting of a weekly low at $4.35 yesterday. Support is layered every 10 cents below that with the downside target the contract low at $3.98 1/4. December futures need to return above the $4.60 to break through initial resistance and penetrate the late-August/September downtrend line.
Hedgers: 25% of expected 2013-crop production is sold via cash forward contract for harvest delivery.
Cash-only marketers: 25% of expected 2013-crop production is sold via forward contract for harvest delivery.
Price action: Soybean futures benefited from short-covering throughout the day and posted gains of 10 1/2 to 14 1/2 cents for a high-range close. Meal and soyoil enjoyed spillover support.
Fundamental analysis: Futures benefited from ideas recent losses, combined with weakness in the U.S. dollar index, have contributed to stepped up buying by Asian feed buyers. However, due to the Chinese holiday that runs through the end of the week, its thought that China has made only small purchases this week. But without fresh daily or weekly export sales data from USDA, it's difficult to gauge whether or not demand has picked up on the recent price slide.
The high-range close gives bulls the momentum heading into overnight trade, but it will be difficult for the market to generate strong followthrough buying due to harvest activity picking up across the Midwest. Strong followthrough buying, therefore, would be a sign the market is working on posting a seasonal low.
Technical analysis: November soybean futures climbed back above the halfway point of the rally from the August low to the August high after posting three consecutive closes below this level. That puts resistance at the 38% retracement level of $13.15 and support at the 62% retracement of $12.56.
Hedgers: Get to 100% sold in the cash market on expected 2013-crop production. We'll manage risk on the board the remainder of the marketing year.
Cash-only marketers: Get to 75% sold on expected 2013-crop production.
Price action: Wheat futures were firmer throughout the day and in the end, deferred futures outpaced gains in the nearbys contracts due to spreading. SRW wheat closed 3 1/4 to 12 cents higher, with HRW up 1 to 9 3/4 cents. HRS futures closed 3 1/4 to 8 cents higher.
Fundamental analysis: Futures have been supported recently by improved export prospects along with weakness in the U.S. dollar index. But traders will have to wait for the government to reopen before it receives official export sales data.
Adding to support today were concerns about delayed seeding of the winter wheat crop in Ukraine and areas of Russia and freeze damage in Argentina. Forecasts for a freeze event in areas of Australia this weekend are also raising concerns about the global crop.
Technical analysis: December SRW wheat futures posted a new-for-the-move high of $6.98 before softening into the close. But today's higher-high is a positive technical chart development. Bulls' next objective is the July high of $7.05 3/4, with support at the late August high of $6.76 1/2.
Hedgers: 50% of 2013-crop is sold in the cash market.
Cash-only marketers: 25% of 2013-crop is sold.
Price action: Cotton futures ended the day near session highs with gains of 69 to 72 points through the July contract, with far-deferred contracts posting slight gains.
Fundamental analysis: Futures enjoyed spillover from buying in the grain markets, as well as weakness in the U.S. dollar index. Technical chart improvement is also building on itself to supply additional encouragement for traders to extend long positions.
Concerns about crop quality in the South is adding to support, although it will be difficult for the market to post an extended rally unless export demand improves.
Technical analysis: December cotton futures posted a strong upside day of trade on the daily chart and are working on posting strong weekly gains. Next resistance is the psychological 88.00-cent level, followed by the June high of 89.56 cents.
Hedgers: 50% of expected 2013-crop production is hedged in December cotton futures at 83.87 cents. 50% of expected 2013-crop production is also sold via cash forward contract for harvest delivery.
Cash-only marketers: 50% of expected 2013-crop production is sold via cash forward contract for harvest delivery.