Turmoil In Ukraine Jolts Grain Futures Higher.

Aug 06, 2014

Closing Grain & Livestock Futures Prices.

Sep. corn closed at $3.63 and 1/4, up 7 cents
Aug. soybeans closed at $12.37, up 14 and 1/4 cents
Aug. soybean meal closed at $388.00, up $5.80
Aug. soybean oil closed at 35.79, up 32 points
Sep. wheat closed at $5.68, up 15 and 1/2 cents
Aug. live cattle closed at $158.55, up 10 cents
Aug. lean hogs closed at $116.40, up 55 cents
Sep. crude oil closed at $96.92, down 46 cents
Oct. cotton closed at 63.97, up 51 points
Aug. Class III milk closed at $21.64, up 1 cent
Aug. gold closed at $1,306.70, up $22.70
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 16,443.34, up 13.87 points.

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Ag Market News And Comments

Soybeans were higher on fund and technical buying. There was no real fresh direct news for beans, but the near term supply is tight and demand, for both old and new crop, is good. Past that – the trade’s watching the weather and waiting for widespread rainfall. Beans and other commodities are also keeping an eye on political and economic developments connected to the situation in Ukraine. Soybean meal and oil followed soybeans higher.

More on Russia's Putin Escalating Agriculture Trade War With US and EU.

Corn was higher on fund and technical buying. Colombia bought 6.3 million bushels of new crop U.S. corn, with U.S. corn at a discount to some major competitors, and ethanol profit margins remain solid. Corn’s also watching the weather, with generally non-threatening temperatures and forecasts for rain. Ethanol futures were higher. The EIA reports ethanol production for the week ending August 1 was 902,000 barrels per day, down 52,000 on the week and a new 13-week low. Ethanol stocks were pegged at 18.3 million barrels, down 8.3% from the previous week.

The wheat complex was higher on fund and commercial buying. European crop quality is a concern following heavy rainfall during harvest, with more on the way in the near future. Also, wheat’s watching developments in the Black Sea region. Fundamentals are nominally bearish, but the trade does expect at least some increase in export demand. Iran bought 50,000 tons of Black Sea origin wheat.

Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle futures were mixed ahead of widespread cash cattle business. Contracts were down sharply early, bouncing back near midday and ending the session near the highs of the day. August was up $.10 at $158.55 October $.30 higher at $155.95.

Feeder cattle were mixed, also waiting for cash business to get going. Like the live pit, contracts rallied a bit after an early drop and closed near session highs. August was $.07 higher at $221.32 and September was unchanged at $220.72.

Direct cattle markets are basically at a standstill, but packer inquiry should start increasing by Thursday. Asking prices are holding around $164 to $165 in the South and $260+ in the North. Significant trade volume isn’t likely until Thursday or Friday. After last week’s business, packers are short bought, but market ready numbers are tight, supporting prices and limiting demand.


At Cuba-Interstate Regional Stockyards in Missouri, feeder steers weighing less than 400 pounds were $5 to $10 higher and feeder heifers weighing less than 450 pounds were up $5 to $15. Feeder steers weighing more than 400 pounds and feeder heifers weighing above 450 pounds were unchanged. Slaughter cows were $1 to $2 lower. Supply was moderate, with USDA noting “a large crowd at the cow sale following the feeder sale, which included a few complete dispersions and several good young bred cows”. Feeder steers weighing 300 to 400 pounds ranged from $310 to $345 and 4 to 5 weights sold at $267 to $315. Feeder heifers weighing 300 to 400 pounds sold at $262.50 to $316 and the 400 to 500 pound category ranged from $248 to $275, with a small fleshy 492 pound package at $230. Average dressing breaking slaughter cows sold at $106 to $115. Boxed beef was lower on light to moderate demand and moderate offerings.

Choice was down $1.30 at $261.97 and Select was $.98 lower at $255.77. The estimated cattle slaughter of 115,000 head was up 2,000 on the week, but down 8,000 on the year.

Lean hogs were higher on short covering and their discount to the cash index. That’s despite more losses in the wholesale market and mostly steady to lower cash trade. Hogs, and cattle, are keeping an eye on Russia’s meat import restrictions. Moscow doesn’t currently buy U.S. beef or pork, but they are a big chicken customer. August was up $.55 at $116.40 and October was $.52 higher at $102.20.

Cash hogs were mostly steady to lower. Market ready numbers remain tight, but slaughter levels have been reduced and packers aren’t having many problems getting supplies. Still, the recent losses in price are generally in-line with seasonal trends.

National Direct barrows and gilts were down $.40 at $106 to $119 for a weighted average of $115.40. The Eastern Cornbelt had no recent comparison, with a range of $114 to $114.19 and weighted average of $114.12, the Western Belt was the exception, up $.28 at $106 to $119 for an average of $116.15, and Iowa/Southern Minnesota was $.56 lower at $106 to 119 with an average of $116.15. Midwest cash hog markets were steady to $4 lower at $82 to $90. Missouri Direct butcher trade was down $1 at $111 to $112 on light to moderate supply and demand. Missouri Direct sows were steady at $78 to $94. Illinois Direct sows were mostly steady at $80 to $97 with moderate demand for moderate offerings.

The pork carcass cutout value was down $1.65 at $126.31. Except for the bellies, primals were all sharply lower. The estimated hog slaughter of 405,000 head was 1,000 lower than last week and 16,000 less than last year.




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