Market Snapshot, Noon CT (VIP) -- October 24, 2013

October 24, 2013 06:55 AM

Corn futures have settled into slightly weaker trade with futures 1 to 3 cents lower.

  • Corn futures are slightly weaker due to ongoing harvest-related hedge pressure, but selling is being limited by very strong export sales data released this morning.
  • Weekly export corn sales data in excess of 1.341 MMT for 2013-14 delivery the week ended Oct. 3 came in well above expectations. Traders believe more positive export data may be coming as USDA catches up following the government shutdown.
  • USDA also announced a 210,000-MT corn sale to Mexico for 2014-15 this morning.
  • Gulf basis is a penny higher for immediate shipment and steady for later delivery in late-morning trading.
  • The forecast for drier weather through Monday is expected to help harvest activity ramp up. But precip is in the forecast thereafter, especially for the southern Corn Belt and northern Delta.
  • Futures are also finding light support from the weaker U.S. dollar index.


Soybean futures firmed ahead of midday to trade 1 to 4 cents higher with November leading gains.

  • Nearby contracts continue to benefit from a strong weekly export sales tally of 929,800 MT for 2013-14 and 18,000 MT for 2014-15 the week ended Oct. 3, which met expectations.
  • A weaker U.S. dollar index is adding to that support.
  • Adding to the gains in the nearbys are the impressive soymeal sales of 850,100 MT, which were more than three times the top end of traders' expectations.
  • Gulf soybean basis is unchanged for immediate through December shipments and 2 cents firmer for January shipment in late-morning trading. This follows a decline of 2 cents for immediate delivery and a penny for November earlier this morning.
  • Beans are seeing some spreading activity with corn this morning.


Wheat futures continue to trade mostly weaker with SRW mixed, HRW down 3 to 4 cents and HRS fractionally to 3 cents lower.

  • Profit-taking and spillover from corn are weighing on wheat today.
  • Also, traders are disappointed in this morning's Weekly Export Sales Report, which reflected a pullback in wheat sales from recent weeks. Sales of 653,600 MT for 2013-14 for the week ended Oct. 3 came in near the low-end of pre-report expectations.
  • But traders note the reported export figure preceded the mid-month plunge in the U.S. dollar index.
  • Also, overnight export action of late has shown other countries receiving much of the business
  • The weather forecast for the Plains continues to suggest favorable seeding and growing conditions for the HRW crop.
  • Weakness in the U.S. dollar index is providing some light support.
  • Gulf SRW basis is unchanged in late-morning trading.


Live cattle futures are slightly higher in nearby contracts in light bull spreading. Feeder cattle are slightly weaker.

  • Cattle futures seeing light support from the surge to record cash prices yesterday in both the Texas and Kansas market. Texas saw prices at mostly $132 to $133 while Kansas saw $131 to $133 trade.
  • Gains in futures are tempered by the slight setback in boxed beef prices this morning following the strong gains yesterday.
  • Choice beef slipped 39 cents this morning to $200.40 per cwt., but Select firmed 43 cents. But movement is a positive 105 loads.
  • Weekly beef export sales of 10,400 MT for the week ended Oct. 3 were down 2,400 MT from the week prior.
  • Profit-taking is the dominant feature in feeder cattle futures.


Lean hog futures are moderately to sharply higher.

  • The $3-plus discount December futures holds to the cash hog index continue to lift futures this morning. The index has risen the past three days.
  • Some traders believe the $200-plus Choice beef prices could lift demand for less expensive pork.
  • Talk that there have been more findings of the porcine epidemic diarrhea virus are lifting deferred contracts.
  • But cash hog bids are generally 50 cents to $1 lower today as packers have this week's needs secured and are bidding to next week's needs.
  • The pork cutout value rose 4 cents this morning and movement was a solid 180.4 loads.
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