Livestock markets diverged Tuesday

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Corn futures rose moderately Tuesday. Today’s losses in nearby soybeans and wheat seemed bearish for corn prices as well, especially with the U.S. dollar rising significantly. However, corn prices proved surprisingly strong. Traders cited short-covering and unwinding of wheat/corn spreads for a portion of the surprising rise, while we give some credit to harvest delays caused by current Corn Belt rainfall. December corn futures climbed 6.5 cents to at $4.435/bushel at Tuesday’s close and May rose 6.0 cents to $4.6425/.

The soy complex was decidedly mixed at Tuesday’s settlement. Although persistent rumors of Chinese buying have recently supported soybean futures, the nearby contracts declined today. One has to wonder if the concurrent U.S. dollar bounce and equity reversal undercut prices somewhat. Talk of strong demand seemed to boost soyoil values, whereas the likely unwinding of meal/oil spreads may have depressed meal futures. November soybeans dipped 6.0 cents to $12.67/bushel Tuesday afternoon, while December soyoil gained 0.27 cents to 40.66 cents/pound, and December soymeal lost $5.0 to $402.4/ton.

Indian news may have depressed the wheat markets Tuesday. In contrast to today’s corn gains, wheat futures moved generally lower. U.S dollar strength and equity index losses may have weighed upon golden grain values somewhat, but bears may also have reacted to news that Indian officials are set to lower the floor price for exported product, which has the potential to undercut the global market. December CBOT wheat closed 6.75 cents lower at $6.8575/bushel Tuesday, while December KCBT wheat slid 5.25 cents to $7.5625, and December MGE futures tumbled 6.25 cents to $7.5025.

Delivery news and financial markets may have depressed cattle futures. Despite last week’s cash advance and rumors of wholesale strength, cattle futures turned lower Tuesday. News of active deliveries against October CME futures probably prompted considerable selling, as did the afternoon confluence of equity index weakness and U.S. dollar strength, since both developments are viewed as negative for beef demand. December cattle futures fell 0.40 cents to 132.75 cents/pound in late Tuesday trading, while April slid 0.37 to 135.27. Meanwhile, November feeder cattle plunged 1.90 cents to 167.50 cents/pound, and January dove 1.72 to 166.75.

The hog market proved surprisingly strong Tuesday. Although major seasonal weakness over the next 6-8 weeks is expected to depress the hog and pork complex, Monday’s expiration of the October contract left nearby December hog futures at a substantial discount to rumored country values. That difference seemed to spark active buying. December hog futures leapt 1.45 cents to 87.80 cents/pound as Tuesday’s pit session ended, while April surged 0.65 cents to 90.10.



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