Corn futures are 1 to 3 cents lower in all but the front-month contract, which is 2 cents firmer.
- Bull spreading continues in the corn market, with new-crop futures pressured by the perception that weather is boosting yield potential.
- Our weighted Crop Condition Index shows the corn crop improved by 2.7 points from last week to 367.3 (0 to 500 being perfect).
- Weather forecasts continue to call for below-normal temps and waves of showers. As a result, traders expect next week's condition report to show further improvement.
- December corn futures are pivoting around support at yesterday's low, with bears' next target the psychological $4.50 level.
- Gulf corn basis for immediately delivery has softened 15 cents this morning to stand 80 cents above September futures.
New-crop soybean futures are 11 to 16 cents lower, with August beans down around a penny.
- Traders view weather so far in August as ideal for the critical pod-filling stage. This is weighing on new-crop futures.
- Additionally, weather forecasts call for below-normal temps to continue as well as waves of showers for the Midwest for the next week.
- Our weighted Crop Condition Index shows the soybean crop improved by 2 points from last week to 362.87 (0 to 500 being perfect). Traders look for further slight improvement to be reflected in next week's report.
- Traders are ignoring fresh demand news, as focus is on the crop. USDA announced a 110,000-MT soybean sale to China for 2013-14.
- November soybean futures have posted a weekly low to further weaken the near-term technical outlook of the market. Bears' next target is the June low of $11.40.
- Gulf soybean basis is steady for immediate delivery to stand $1.70 over November futures.
HRW and SRW wheat futures are mostly 1 to 2 cents higher in mixed trade, with HRS futures steady to 5 cents higher.
- Wheat is being lifted by short-covering, although upside potential is being limited by weakness in the corn market.
- HRS futures are being supported by a slight drop in crop condition ratings. Our weighted Crop Condition Index shows the spring wheat crop declined by nearly 3 points from last week to stand at 368.10 (0 to 500 being perfect).
- Traders aren't surprised the U.S. was snubbed on Egypt's latest wheat tender. The county purchased 60,000 MT of Romanian and 60,000 MT of Ukrainian wheat.
- Additionally, export sources say the Iraqi grain board has purchased 150,000 MT of Australian and 50,000 MT of Canadian wheat.
- And traders are also digesting what's being called "better-than-expected" harvest results in the EU, particularly in France, where harvest is around half complete.
Live cattle and feeder futures remain slightly higher at midday.
- Price action in live and feeder cattle futures remains lackluster at midday, although futures continue to hold onto early gains.
- Prospects of tightening supplies are helping to support futures, although buying is being limited by concerns about beef demand.
- Boxed beef prices are mixed this morning on lackluster movement of just 72 loads moving hands. Traders will remain hesitant about aggressively rebuilding long positions until they are convinced the beef market has bottomed.
- Traders expect cash trade to at least be steady with last week, especially since packers' profit margins are in the black. This week's showlist is nearly even with last week.
- Meanwhile, feeder futures are seeing support from tightening calf supplies and softer corn prices.
Lean hog futures have slightly extended early gains in the fall-month contracts.
- October and December lean hog futures have slightly extended early gains to trade moderately higher at midday.
- October lean hog futures gapped higher on the open, slipped below the opening level, but have since extended early gains.
- The cash hog market is steady to $1 higher on variable demand. Due to profitable margins, some packers are raising their Saturday kill requirements, while others say they are having no difficulty securing needed supplies.
- Bulls are encouraged by strength in the pork cutout market, as values are $2.15 stronger this morning on solid movement of 212.9 loads.