Country markets for corn reportedly traded steady-firm Wednesday morning, which probably supported nearby CBOT futures. Meanwhile, talk that the much is getting done during the current Midwest planting window seemed to undercut deferred futures. Bulls also seemed unwilling to push the commodity markets higher in the face of continued U.S. dollar strength. July corn slipped 1.75 cents to $6.5075/bushel Wednesday afternoon, while December fell 6.0 cents to $5.3175.
Soybean prices at various country markets were called merely steady this morning, but the underlying tightness of domestic supplies seemed to limit losses in nearby CBOT futures. Having the April NOPA crush numbers prove rather slow may also have supported old crop prices. Meanwhile, accelerating Corn Belt plantings probably tended to undercut new crop futures. Bears could also point to sizeable overnight losses in the Asian palm oil markets, which in turn weighed upon soybean oil values. July soybean futures slipped 2.0 cents to $14.1275/bushel at their Wednesday close, while July soyoil dropped 0.41 cents to 49.35 cents/pound, and July soybean meal lost $1.3 to $410.5/ton.
The wheat markets came under renewed downward pressure Wednesday, with U.S. dollar strength very likely playing a role in the slide. Traders were also quick to blame improved weather over the central U.S., technical factors and relatively liquid supplies for the sizeable losses. July CBOT wheat futures closed 17.0 cents to $6.9375/bushel Wednesday afternoon, while July KCBT wheat tumbled 15.0 cents to $7.5175, and July MGE futures lost 6.75 cents to $8.0375.
Choice beef cutout jumped to a fresh record around midday Wednesday. And while that will very likely persuade producers to hold out for higher cash cattle prices later this week, it seemingly convinced Chicago cattle traders that soaring retail prices will curtail consumer demand by late spring. Thus, cattle futures suffered surprising losses later in the day. June cattle fell 0.77 cents to 120.00 cents/pound at its Wednesday afternoon settlement, while December plunged 0.90 cents to 124.47. Meanwhile, August feeder cattle futures dove 1.12 cents to 145.30 cents/pound, while November sank 1.22 cents to 150.52.
Early reports of cash market firmness probably supported CME lean hog futures Wednesday morning. Another strong wholesale showing on the midday report also favored bulls. However, the afternoon cattle reversal apparently spilled over into the swine pit, with hog futures give back significant portion of their big Tuesday advance. Traders may also be expecting seasonal weakness through late May. June hog futures slid 0.67 cents to 91.92 cents/pound late Wednesday afternoon, while December futures lost 0.80 cents to 77.10.
Cotton futures seemed to suffer from downward pressure being exerted by the U.S. dollar advance Wednesday. The fact that the July ICE contract again failed at chart resistance associated with its 40-day moving average may also have exaggerated selling. However, the equity markets resumed their push to successive record highs by late morning, thereby mitigating early losses. That implies future economic strength, improved apparel demand and, ultimately, firmer cotton prices. July cotton slid 0.47 cents to 86.45 cents/pound around midsession Wednesday, while December declined 0.67 cents to 85.49.