Price action: Corn futures extended losses through the day session and closed 6 1/2 to 7 1/2 cents lower, which was near session lows.
Fundamental outlook: Without fresh news for the market to digest, traders returned their focus to reports of softening interior basis levels due to a pickup in the harvest pace. Better-than-expected yield reports also weighed on the market. Meanwhile, there are reports that export demand is strong, although the absence of official data from USDA is a disappointment to the market.
Traders are also disappointed USDA will not release its survey-based Crop Production Report on Friday, as they expected the report to show a slight uptick in the yield, but for lower harvested acres to result in a crop of around 13.8 billion bushels.
Technical outlook: December corn futures briefly traded above yesterday's high in overnight trade and then violated support at yesterday's low. The contract narrowly avoided posting a downside day of trade on the daily chart, but the low-range close gives bears momentum heading into overnight trade. Important support lies at last week's low of $4.35.
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 were firmer through the overnight hours, but bears controlled the day session and futures ended 7 3/4 to 9 1/4 cents lower through the August 2014 contract, which was off the daily lows but still low-range. Funds were sellers of soybeans, dumping a net 7,000 contracts (35 million bu.) for the day.
Fundamental outlook: Harvest pressure weighed on the soybean market today. Combines are returning to fields following rain delays through the weekend. With unseasonably warm temps and mostly dry conditions forecast for at least the next several days, harvest activity is expected to ramp up. Plus, early yield results are coming in generally strong.
Because the government is closed and USDA's October crop reports won't be released on Friday as previously scheduled, traders are having to generate more of their own data. Therefore, there isn't a lot of interest in adding new positions. Following recent gains, traders took some profits out of the market today.
Technical outlook: November soybean futures narrowly missed posting a bearish reversal on the day. The inability to find buying interest above $13.00 yesterday and today suggests a challenge of support at the Oct. 1 low of $12.63 1/2 may be coming unless there is a fresh bullish catalyst.
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: All wheat flavors were stronger in overnight trade but softened with the start of daytime trade. SRW wheat ended 3/4 to 1 1/2 cents lower, with HRW up 1 to 4 cents. HRS ended mixed, with nearbys 1 to 3 cents higher.
Fundamental outlook: Ongoing concerns about acreage in Ukraine and Russia provided support for wheat futures in overnight trade, but as corn and soybean futures softened due to harvest-related pressure, buying lightened in the wheat markets. Still, the ability of HRW and HRS to favor a firmer tone on the close signals traders expect the U.S. to garner a larger portion of global wheat business this year due to planting restraints in the Black Sea region due to the onset of winter weather.
Traders also reacted to news that France's farm ministry cut the country's wheat crop peg by 117,000 MT from last month to 36.9 MMT.
Technical outlook: December SRW wheat futures came within 1/4-cent of the $7.00 level, which was a new for-the-move high, but the contract settled mid-range. Consecutive closes above the $7.00 level and the July high of $7.05 3/4 would make bulls' next target the June high of $7.38 1/4.
Hedgers: 50% of 2013-crop is sold in the cash market.
Cash-only marketers: 25% of 2013-crop is sold.
Price action: Cotton futures saw both followthrough selling and corrective short-covering today, but bears had the advantage to wrap up the session. Most contracts ended low-range with losses of 3 to 38 points.
Fundamental outlook: Yesterday the cotton market saw heavy selling pressure as the threat of rains from Tropical Storm Karen eased, with futures triggering sell stops on their way back toward the bottom of the extended trading range. While cotton futures saw some corrective short-covering at times today, this was overshadowed by followthrough selling. Spillover from the corn and soybean markets added to the negative tone. Otherwise, fundamental news was lacking for the market today.
Technical outlook: December cotton futures tested but respected support at yesterday's low of 83.60 cents today. A move through this support level would point the contract toward the bottom of the extended sideways trading range at 81.72 cents. Resistance stands at the October high of 87.78 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.