CORN MIXED, BEANS AND WHEAT FIRMER OVERNIGHT... As of 6:30 a.m. CT, corn futures are narrowly mixed with old-crop contracts slightly firmer and new-crop modestly weaker, soybeans are 2 to 5 cents higher, Chicago wheat is 3 to 5 cents higher, Kansas City wheat is 3 to 4 cents higher and Minneapolis wheat is fractionally to 6 cents higher. The U.S. dollar index is modestly weaker this morning.
EPA OFFICIAL COMMENTS ON RFS VOLUME REQUIREMENTS FOR 2013, 2014... Christopher Grundler, director of EPA's Office of Transportation and Air Quality, said EPA is "quite confident" that the number of excess Renewable Identification Numbers, or RINs, in the marketplace will ensure compliance with RFS standards for 2013, which have not yet been finalized. In 2014, however, he said "the situation could be different" because supply projections may not meet the substantial increase in total volumetric requirements for renewable fuels, which will reach 18.15 billion gallons. The number of RINs carried over from 2013 will also be "a critical factor" in determining how obligated parties show compliance with the 2014 requirements, he said. Grundler said that the agency intends to finalize the 2013 standard "before the summer is over" and his goal is to propose the 2014 standard "shortly thereafter." However, an Energy Information Administration official testifying at the same hearing said EPA would have to lower the RFS target of 36 billion gallons by 2022, saying the RFS program won't come close to meeting the legislated target.
ARGENTINA HALTS WHEAT EXPORTS... Argentina has told exporters it won't authorize any more shipments of wheat/flour for 2012-13 as domestic bread prices have soared, according to a Dow Jones newswire story. The Argentine government has made no official announcement, but the Domestic Commerce Minister reportedly met with exporters earlier this week to inform them of the decision. Meanwhile, the Argentine government has authorized 16 MMT of corn exports for 2013-14 -- 1 MMT more than 2012-13 -- as it tries to encourage producers to plant more corn.
WEEKLY EXPORT SALES REPORT OUT THIS MORNING... For the week ended June 20, traders expect: corn sales between 200,000 and 500,000 MT; wheat sales between 300,000 and 600,000 MT; soybean sales between 100,000 and 400,000 MT; soymeal sales between 50,000 and 150,000 MT; and soyoil sales between 0 and 10,000 MT.
LATE-WEEK CASH CATTLE TRADE LIKELY... Cash cattle bids and asking prices are still $4 to $5 apart in the Plains, suggesting cash cattle trade will again be pushed deep into the week. Opinions remain split on whether cash cattle prices will eventually come in steady to weaker or steady to firmer compared with last week's $120 trade in the Southern Plains.
PORK CUTOUT FIRMING, CASH HOGS SOFTENING... The pork cutout value was higher Wednesday for the 12th time in 13 days. Meanwhile, cash hog bids are softening amid light packer demand. But with cutting margins now very profitable, the cash hog market could make one more run to the upside before a seasonal top is in place.
OVERNIGHT DEMAND NEWS... South Korea purchased 55,000 MT of Brazilian corn and tendered to buy up to another 140,000 MT of optional origin corn. South Korea has purchased 1 MMT of Indian wheat. Jordan tendered to buy 150,000 MT of optional origin milling wheat and 100,000 MT of optional origin feed barley. Japan received no bids in its tender to buy 120,000 MT of feed wheat and 200,000 MT of feed barley.