AgriCharts Market Commentary

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Corn futures settled 4 to 6 cents higher on Thursday.  The market traded within a 9 to 10 cent range, and most contracts finished just a penny or two off their highs.  Dec corn hit the lowest reading since June 23 at $3.75 3/4 before recovering. Weekly export sales reported by the USDA were slightly above the high end of published trade expectations.  Net sales increased by 51% from the previous week.  Old crop purchases were 364,900 MT, and new crop sales were 443,300 MT, with Japan buying a total of 422,200 MT.  Corn export shipments were down just over 84,000 MT from last week, but still over one million MT. Total export commitments are now above 100% of the WASDE full year forecast, but just 64% of 2014 numbers.  Now the challenge becomes getting them all shipped before August 31.

Sep 15 Corn closed at $3.73 1/4, up 5 1/2 cents,

Dec 15 Corn closed at $3.83 3/4, up 5 1/2 cents,

Mar 16 Corn closed at $3.94 3/4, up 5 3/4 cents

May 16 Corn closed at $4.01, up 5 1/2 cents


Soybean futures closed the session 5 to 8 cents higher, regaining some of the damage that was done on Monday.  New crop export sales for the week ending July 23 were 899,100 MT, a 272% increase from the previous week.  China was responsible for 405,400 MT worth of purchases.  Old crop sales were 416,700 MT, a 416% increase from the previous week, with 300,000 MT of 14/15 beans booked for China.  Meal bookings were within expectations at 151,800 MT.  This was an increase of 351% from the week ending July 16.  Total commitments are now 12% larger than 2014 at this time.  We continue to see progress in shipping the overhang of old crop meal commitments. Bean oil bookings were a new high for this marketing year at 74,800 MT, mostly to Venezuela.  In the daily reporting system, USDA indicated a new crop soybean sale to unknown destinations of 140,000 MT. Those will go in next weeks total.

Aug 15 Soybeans closed at $9.90 1/4, up 7 1/4 cents,

Sep 15 Soybeans closed at $9.64 1/2, up 7 1/2 cents,

Nov 15 Soybeans closed at $9.50, up 6 3/4 cents,

Jan 16 Soybeans closed at $9.55 1/4, up 6 1/2 cents,

Aug 15 Soybean Meal closed at $357.10, up $7.10,

Aug 15 Soybean Oil closed at $30.28, up $0.07


Wheat futures finished mostly a penny to 4 cents lower on Thursday afternoon.  September CHI wheat was the sole contract higher, only up 1/4 of a cent.  The final Wheat Quality Council average yield estimate from their HRS tour is 49.9 bpa, up from the 2014 yield of 48.6 bpa, and the five year average of 45.2 bpa.  USDA reported net export sales increased by 39% week over week, for a total of 700,400 MT during the week ending July 23.  This is the highest quantity of sales in seven weeks. Shipments dropped by 37% however.  The International Grains Council in London trimmed its global wheat production estimate by 1 MMT to 710 MMT (July USDA= 721.96 MMT), blaming unfavorable growing conditions in Canada and the EU.

Sep 15 CBOT Wheat closed at $4.96 1/2, up 1/4 cent,

Sep 15 KCBT Wheat closed at $4.91, down 4 1/4 cents,

Sep 15 MGEX Wheat closed at $5.26 3/4, down 2 3/4 cents


Live cattle futures closed 80 cents lower to 33 cents higher, with the strength in the August contract.  Feeders settled 2 higher to 32 cents lower, due to stronger corn and soybean prices on Thursday.  Weekly exports of beef during the week ending July 23 totaled just 6,200 MT, according to the weekly USDA report.  The cash cattle trade was mostly inactive throughout the day, with a few sales of $145 live, and $229 dressed.  The CME Feeder Cattle Index for 7/29 was up 89 cents to $215.78.  USDA reports higher afternoon wholesale prices. Choice boxes were up 72 cents (+75 cents Thurs to Thurs) to $233.34, while select boxes are up 25 cents (+$1.36 Thurs to Thurs) to an average of $229.32.  The WTD estimated slaughter is 427,000 head, down 9,000 head from a week ago at this time, and 95% of this week in 2014.

Aug 15 Cattle closed at $145.225, up $0.300,

Oct 15 Cattle closed at $146.450, down $0.025,

Dec 15 Cattle closed at $148.125, down $0.150,

Aug 15 Feeder Cattle closed at $211.225, down $0.250

Sep 15 Feeder Cattle closed at $208.600, down $0.350

Oct 15 Feeder Cattle closed at $206.600, down $0.225


Lean Hogs

Lean hog futures finished a dime to 80 cents lower Thursday.  USDA weekly pork export sales were 22,100 MT, up 90% from a week ago but never a complete picture of pork export sales.  Mexico booked 8,700 MT.  The CME Lean Hog Index for the 7/28 average was at $78.33, off just 3 cents.  The USDA reports the average pork carcass cutout as 26 cents higher in its afternoon report.  Ribs took a significant hit today, dropping $6.87 to $148.04.  Hams and bellies each were higher, up $3.75 (+7.8% Thurs to Thurs) and $4.34 (+5.6% Thurs to Thurs) respectively.  Bellies reached a new calendar year high, and prices that have not been seen since July 21 of 2014.  Estimated WTD slaughter through the Thursday close was 1.687 million head, 5% larger than the same period in 2014, and 22,000 head larger than it was a week ago.  Cash hog base prices were reported as 77 cents lower in the WCB, and $1.02 lower in the ECB.  No prices were reported in the IA/MN region due to confidentiality.

Aug 15 Hogs closed at $79.675, down $0.175,

Oct 15 Hogs closed at $65.700, down $0.375

Dec 15 Hogs closed at $61.950, up $0.025


Cotton futures closed Thursday 20 to 35 points lower.  USDA reported combined old and new crop cotton export sales at 99,200 RB, with 93,100 RB of Upland and 6,100 RB of Pima sales.  Net sales decreased by 32% week over week, to the lowest number of weekly sales since the week ending April 30.  Upland sales for 15/16 cotton @ 69,800 RB made up most of the upland total.  Shipments were 168,500 RB, helping accumulated exports get to 100% of the total projected for the year; the five year average for this date is 98%.  The marketing year ends July 31, leaving 8 days of export sales reporting following this report.  The Cotlook A and Forward A Index are both up 75 points, to 71.50 and 73.75 respectively.  ICE reported that there are 116,181 certified bales in stock, with 1,824 decertified bales.

Oct 15 Cotton closed at 63.66, down 23 points,

Dec 15 Cotton closed at 63.55, down 34 points

Mar 16 Cotton closed at 63.57, down 31 points

May 16 Cotton closed at 63.86, down 28 points

Market Commentary provided by:

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