First Thing Today (VIP) -- August 3, 2012

August 3, 2012 01:38 AM


CORN, BEANS LOWER; WHEAT MIXED TO FIRMER... As of 6:30 a.m. CT, corn and soybean futures are trading mostly 3 to 7 cents lower, while wheat futures are mixed with a slight upside bias at all three exchanges. The U.S. dollar index is under heavy pressure ahead of the July jobs data this morning.

RAINS TO FAVOR NORTHERN, EASTERN AREAS... Scattered rains are falling in the northern and southeastern Corn Belt this morning. Those areas are expected to see the best precip through the weekend, with some locations seen getting inch-plus rains. The central Corn Belt has limited rainfall chances, with most locations likely to get a half inch or less.

INFORMA TO RELEASE AUGUST CROP ESTIMATES THIS MORNING... Informa Economics will issue its August crop report at 10:30 a.m. CT. The report will feature corn and soybean crop forecasts as well as an update of wheat production.

JULY JOBS REPORT OUT THIS MORNING... Economists expect the Labor Department to show nonfarm payrolls increased 100,000 in July, according to a Reuters poll. The unemployment rate is expected to remain unchanged at 8.2%.

CHINA SELLS ALL OF BEANS OFFERED AT RECORD PRICE... China sold all 400,907 MT of state-owned soybeans put up for auction this week at a record price of 4,381 yuan ($691) per ton. Demand for state-owned Chinese reserves is rising as prices are nearly 8% cheaper than imported soybeans.

INDIA CONFIRMS DROUGHT SITUATION... The head of the India Meteorological Center says June 1 to Aug. 1 rainfall was 19% below normal and monsoon rains will likely be 85% of the long-term average for the growing season. Northwestern areas of the country are facing the worst drought conditions, with coarse grain and groundnut production most at risk.

USDA REPORT TIMES UNLIKELY TO SHIFT BEFORE AUG. CROP REPORTS... USDA is not seen changing the release times of key reports before the Aug. 10 Crop Production and Supply & Demand Reports, according to contacts. USDA received around 150 comments on whether the report times should be changed on key reports and is expected to soon release those comments to the public. One factor that remains, according to contacts, is that the futures exchanges could still alter their trading hours should USDA opt to shift release times outside of current trading hours. CME Group starts open-outcry trade prior to the release of key reports now.

STABENOW: SENATE WILL NOT ACT ON HOUSE-PASSED AG DISASTER BILL... Senate Ag Chair Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) flatly said the Senate will not even consider the House-passed disaster measure because it is too limited and instead she will continue to push both sides to conference a new farm bill that includes broader ag assistance. Absent that, she said Senate Democrats will offer a stand-alone "bipartisan comprehensive disaster assistance program" in September.

$4 to $5 higher prices for cash cattle in the Plains Thursday, signaling they are anticipating strong retailer demand as grocers gear up for Labor Day features. Based on the premium traders are willing to maintain in cattle futures, they are also anticipating a period of stronger demand ahead. The boxed beef market will be watched closely in the coming weeks to see if actual beef demand lives up to lofty expectations.

PORK CUTOUT SOFTENS... While packers moved a strong 105.25 loads of pork Thursday, it came amid a $1.25 drop in the cutout value. With a seasonal build in pork supplies ahead and expectations producers will liquidate herds amid high feed prices, the pork product market could face additional near-term price pressure.

OVERNIGHT DEMAND NEWS... Taiwan tendered for 40,000 MT to 60,000 MT of US or Brazilian soybeans.


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