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Overnight highlights. Following are highlights of overnight trade (as of 6:45 a.m. CT) and opening livestock calls:
Corn: Mixed. Futures opened higher, then retreated, but are now mixed. Upside potential is being limited by profit-taking given the highly overbought condition of the market. However, the worsening and spreading drought situation continues to stress the corn crop -- as reflected by yesterday's plunge in condition ratings. Today's high of $7.89 for December corn is initial resistance -- with key resistance at $8.00.
Soybeans: 7 to 13 cents lower. Futures are seeing profit-taking after a higher start to the session. November beans opened above the $16.00 level and so far have remained above support at yesterday's low to keep the trend clearly up. Continued crop deterioration is helping to limit losses from profit-taking, as is a hot and dry forecast.
Wheat: Mixed. Chicago wheat is mixed, while Kansas City and Minneapolis are firmer. Pressure from profit-taking is being limited by global crop concerns. Rains are slowing the harvest in areas of Europe, while rising temps are seen damaging crop prospects further in Russia. This raises expectations for U.S. export prospects.
Live cattle: Mixed. Futures are expected to be choppy this morning, but upside potential will be limited by concerns about the cash market. Choice beef values were 10 cents lower to start the week and Select declined 38 cents, but movement was strong at 192 loads. This week's cattle showlist is smaller in Kansas and Texas, but up in Nebraska from last week.
Lean Hogs: Mixed. Futures are expected to be mixed, with nearbys supported by the discount they hold to the cash index. August is now the lead-month contract and is trading at around a $8 discount to the index. Pork cutout values slipped 68 cents yesterday, keeping packers' profit margins in the red. The cash market is called steady to $1 lower.