Crops Analysis (VIP) -- July 30, 2013

July 30, 2013 09:46 AM


Price action: Corn futures closed high-range with gains of 2 1/2 to 6 1/4 cents, with September leading the gains.

Fundamental analysis: Corn futures moved higher in trade dominated by short covering as little has changed in fundamental news. Current weather and weather forecasts continue to suggest the crop will move through pollination with little to no stress. Traders continue to show little concern over delayed crop development. The export market has seen some activity lately but the bulk of the business has gone to the lower-priced Black Sea region.

Technical analysis: Futures prices moved higher in trade dominated by short covering. Today's price action for December corn traded inside of Monday's range, which suggests the action was mostly corrective in nature. Monday's low of $4.71 1/4 is near-term support, with layers of support from $4.74 to $4.60 and psychological support at $4.50 in December futures. Resistance starts at $4.90.

Hedgers: 100% sold on 2012-crop in the cash market. 25% of expected 2013-crop production is sold via cash forward contract for harvest delivery.

Cash-only marketers: 100% sold on old-crop. 25% of expected 2013-crop production is sold via forward contract for harvest delivery.




Price action: Soybean futures saw firmer trade in the overnight session, but this quickly gave way to fresh selling this morning and futures ended low-range with losses of 17 to 23 cents. September beans posted a bearish reversal today. Funds sold an estimated 7,000 contracts (35 million bu.) of soybeans today.

Fundamental analysis: Soybean futures initially benefited from short-covering after a slight lowering in USDA's crop condition rating yesterday as well as signs some value buying may be occurring on the price break. USDA reported an unknown destination purchased 290,000 MT of soybeans for 2013-14 delivery today.

But this buying interest dried up during the day session as traders view the forecast for cool, wet weather to persist for the Corn Belt over the next 10 days as favorable. The market is paying little attention to the ongoing slow crop development.

Basis levels were steady to sharply higher in the Midwest today due to tight supplies and slowed farmer selling. But the market is now convinced old-crop supplies will last until harvest.

Technical analysis: November soybean futures broke through Friday's low today and tested but respected psychological support at $12.00. This is initial resistance, followed by the April low of $11.86 1/2. On a corrective bounce, bulls will initially target former support at the July 8 low of $12.25.

Hedgers: 100% sold on 2012-crop in the cash market. 20% forward priced on expected 2013-crop production for harvest delivery.

Cash-only marketers: 100% sold on old-crop. 20% of expected 2013-crop production is sold via forward contract for harvest delivery.




Price action: SRW wheat futures closed roughly 3 to 5 cents higher, HRW futures ended 5 to 7 cents higher and HRW futures were mostly around 3 cents higher. Most contracts ended mid-range for the day.

Fundamental analysis: Wheat futures were supported by news Japan has officially lifted its ban on U.S. western white wheat and soft white feed wheat. In fact, this week's tender from Japan includes 89,579 MT of U.S. western white wheat -- its first tender for that flavor since late May. As a result, there are improved demand hopes. In addition to the door being open for more Japanese demand, other global end-users are stepping up wheat purchases, though much of the business is for cheaper Black Sea origin supplies. Egypt's latest tender was for 240,000 MT of Romanian and Ukrainian wheat.

Price action in the market today signaled how difficult it's going to be for wheat to string together sustained buying interest. Corn must participate in a rally or the upside is limited to mild corrective buying in the wheat market.

Technical analysis: September Chicago wheat futures have a lot of work to do just to signal a short-term low is in place. The first hurdle for bulls is a close above the last correction high at $6.75 3/4, followed by the psychological $7.00 mark and then a 25% retracement of the price plunge from last year's high to this month's low. The contract would have to clear a 38% retracement around $7.46 to signal any up move is more than a bear market correction.

Hedgers: 50% of 2013-crop is sold in the cash market. 100% sold on of 2012-crop.

Cash-only marketers: 25% of 2013-crop sale is sold. 100% sold on 2012-crop.




Price action: Cotton futures settled 35 to 91 points higher today, which was anywhere from a lower-end to high-range close.

Fundamental analysis: The back-and-forth trade in the cotton market continues as traders wait for strong market-moving news to develop on the crop front or with demand. Today's strength was largely tied to Monday's crop progress data, which showed only 39% of the cotton crop setting bolls compared to 57% last year and 56% on average. But at the same time, crop condition ratings marginally improved, which limited buying interest.

Buying interest was also limited by strength in the U.S. dollar index. The dollar is of particular interest because of its impact on exports.

Technical analysis: The sideways trading range for December cotton futures is narrowing, suggesting the market may be getting ready for a breakout attempt from the July trading range, though the broader June trading boundaries are strong support and resistance.

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. 100% sold on old-crop in the cash market.

Cash-only marketers: 85% sold on old-crop. 50% of expected 2013-crop production is sold via cash forward contract for harvest delivery.


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