Pork Prices Plunge, Beef Prices Strong

08:00AM Sep 06, 2012
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Overnight highlights. Following are highlights as of 8:00 a.m. CT and opening livestock calls:

Corn: Mixed. Corn is favoring a firmer tone in mixed trade, with nearbys marginally to 6 cents higher. The U.S. dollar index is strengthening, which is taking some of the buying interest away from the commodity markets. But pressure on corn is being limited by tight supplies.

Soybeans: 6 to 16 cents lower. Futures are off earlier lows, but remain under profit-taking pressure due to a lack of fresh news and strength in the U.S. dollar index. Weakness in country basis levels is also pressuring corn futures, as the national average soybean basis we track fell 14 1/2 cents from last week to 6 cents above November futures. November beans are now leaning on uptrending support.

Wheat: 4 to 6 cents higher. Wheat is firmer, but off session highs due to dollar strength. But pressure is being limited by tightening global supplies and concerns wheat in the Black Sea region is running thin and end-users will turn to the U.S. for supplies.

Live cattle: Mixed. Futures are expected to be mixed as traders wait on cash cattle trade to begin. Expectations are for steady to $1 higher trade with last week due to ongoing strength in the boxed beef market. Choice beef values rose 69 cents yesterday and Select was up $1.14 on strong movement of 255 loads. This suggests supplies are tightening.

Lean Hogs: Lower. Lean hog futures are expected to be pressured by continued weakness in the pork cutout market, as prices slipped $2.57 yesterday on strong movement. Packers' profit margins remain well in the black, but given plentiful supplies, there is no encouragement to raise bids.