Weather concerns dominated the crop markets Monday morning. Anticipated weekend rains over the Corn Belt were very light or nonexistent. Moreover, a high pressure ridge seems set to boost heat and dryness in late August and early September. Talk of potential for an early frost next month may have encouraged bullish corn traders as well. Futures rallied despite a disappointing result on the Export Inspections report. September corn soared 11.0 cents to $4.8475/bushel in Monday morning action, while December jumped 13.0 cents to $4.765.
The soy complex also rocketed upward Monday morning. Soybeans routinely set and fill pods most actively during August, so the crop is most vulnerable to heat and drought during late summer. That essentially explains the big gains posted in response to forecasts for summery conditions later this week and all of the next. The Export Inspections report proved supportive as well. September soybeans leapt 29.5 cents to $13.1275/bushel around midsession Monday, and November beans spiked 34.25 to $12.935. September soyoil climbed 0.64 cents to 43.45 cents/pound, while September soymeal bounded $6.9 higher to $415.7/ton.
Wheat resumed its recent pattern of tracking corn and soy moves Monday. The wheat markets are probably less dependent upon short-term weather forecasts than are corn and soybeans, but diminished harvests might ease pressure upon wheat prices this fall. Moreover, the weekly Export Inspections report was also quite bullish. September CBOT wheat advanced 10.25 cents to $6.4125/bushel by late Monday morning, while September KCBT wheat rose 9.0 cents to $7.0725, and September MGE futures gained 8.0 cents to $7.4525.
Cattle futures moved mostly higher Monday morning. CME traders were apparently anticipating a moderate cash market advance Friday afternoon. That would explain slippage by expiring August futures and modest gains by deferred futures. That is, Monday-morning trading suggests the strong country gains posted last Friday were generally expected. October cattle futures edged up 0.27 cents to 128.20 cents/pound around lunchtime Monday, while December added 0.40 cents to 130.45. September feeder cattle advanced 0.90 cents to 158.57 cents/pound, and November crept 0.07 cents higher to 160.37.
Lean hog futures were mixed Monday morning. Last week’s late cash weakness seemingly caused traders to downplay the wholesale strength seen Friday afternoon, with nearby futures declining as a consequence. Conversely, rising grain and soy prices suggest higher feed costs and diminished industry expansion in 2014. October hog futures sagged 0.25 cents to 86.47 cents/pound just before midday Monday, while December skidded 0.22 cents to 83.22.