AgriCharts Market Commentary
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Corn futures closed 4 to 6 cents higher on the day. The May 14 contract traded as low as $4.73 but found support and settled at $4.83. A sharply higher wheat trade due to continued unrest in Ukraine provided a positive influence. The trade will be watching for updated CONAB figures out of Brazil due out tomorrow. Yesterday morning USDA pegged 2013/14 world ending stocks figure at 158.50, which was higher than the average trade estimate of 156.27 MMT, and also higher than the Feb figure of 157.30 MMT. Yet the US ending stocks estimate came in lower than the average trade estimate.
Soybean futures closed 7 cents lower to 13 cents higher. Old crop prices lost, and new crop prices gained. The Nov 14 contract displayed the most strength and was up 13 cents. The Mar 14 contract traded as high as $14.30 but closed on the lows at $14.11. The Mar 14 meal contract finished just south of unchanged at $452.30. USDA estimated 2013/14 world ending stocks figure at 70.46 MMT, which was lower than the average trade guess of 71.46 MMT and also lower than the Feb figure of 73.01 MMT.
Wheat futures closed more than 14 cents higher in the May14 contracts for all three major classes. The Mar 14 CBOT contract led the way higher and settled at $6.63 (highest close since early December). Dry weather forecasts for the next two weeks in the South Plains, which may threaten crop quality, provided a positive influence. Yesterday USDA left wheat ending stocks UNCH at 558 MB despite trade ideas of an increase to 570 million. World wheat stocks were 183.81 MMT, up slightly from the Feb figure of 183.73 MMT.
Cattle futures settled $0.22 higher to $0.32 lower. Feeders settled $0.15 lower to $0.15 higher. Boxed beef prices were higher with choice cuts up $2.57 and select cuts up $1.72. Choice/Select spread is at $3.76. Cash cattle market is quiet with some light trading reported at $144, and $236 for the dressed. The CME Feeder Cattle Index was up 0.22 at $173.56. Week to date estimated slaughter is 219,000 head, which is 18,000 head less than the same period a year ago.
Lean Hogs settled $0.25 to $1.50 higher. The April 14 contract scored a new high for the move of $118.57 at one point in the session but backed off a bit to settle at $117.10. June14 hogs also posted a new high closing price. The pork carcass cutout was up 2.59 at $117.53. Cash hog prices from the ECB have not been reported, while values from the WCB were up $2.48. IA/MN marketing areas were up $2.22. The CME Lean Hog Index was up $1.10 at $104.73. Week to date estimated slaughter is 821,000 head which is 14,000 head less than the same period a year ago.
Cotton futures settled 38 points lower to 11 points higher on the day. The May 14 contract posted its highest close since August 19 at 91.65. Outside markets helped limit any major upside with the S&P 500 closing down 0.51% at 1867.63. Crude Oil was also sharply lower and finished down $1.38% at $99.72. China cotton futures on the Zhengzhou exchange for May delivery were up 0.19%. ICE Certified stocks were reported 259,742 RB, with 161 new certs, 0 decerts and 0 bales awaiting review. The Cotlook A Index was up 0.05 at 97.35.