Ag Market Commentary

Corn futures are trading steady to a penny higher after closing 2 to 2 1/2 cents higher on Thursday. The Drought Monitor shows parts of the Corn Belt with abnormal dryness. Rains are expected across the more eastern areas, will likely reverse part of that. Weekly corn export shipments for the week of June 8 were down 18.3% on the week to 992,266 MT, with total exports YTD 40.06% above last year. Total corn export commitments are 19.92% above last year at this point. They are 97% of the USDA projected export total slightly lagging the average of 98%. Satellite imagery company Planalytics estimates 2017 US corn yield at 166.9 bu/ac, down 0.5 bu/ac from their previous estimate. China was reported to have sold only 98,293 MT of the nearly 1.385 MMT of 2013 corn offered at an auction of state reserves on Thursday.



Soybean futures are currently trading 2 to 5 cents higher since finishing with gains of mostly 3 to 5 cents on Thursday. Soy meal was down $1.20 in the front month, with July 17 soy oil 65 points higher. Planalytics lowered their 2017 US soybean yield estimate 0.2 bu/ac to 46.8 bu/ac. Thursday’s NOPA reports showed May crush blowing by estimates at 149.246 million bushels, which is 7.27% larger than April and 4.67% below May 2016. Soy oil stocks hit expectations on the nose at 1.749 billion pounds, 1.37% above April but 12.27% lower than last May. US exports for that week were improved over last week at 489,028 MT. Export commitments for 2016/17 soybeans are 106% of the USDA export estimate, well above the average of 100% for this date and last year’s 97%. Compared to last year, they are 19.6% larger YTD.

Wheat futures are mostly 5 to 8 cents higher this morning after higher closes on Thursday. CBT SRW was the strongest yesterday, with MPLS improving after losses earlier in the session. The weekly drought monitor showed most of the Dakotas experiencing some sort of dryness. Weekly US export shipments totaled 624,448 MT, 10.6% over last week’s total exports. Wheat export commitments are just 7% above the 16/17 commitments. When comparing to the USDA projected export total, they are 26% complete, vs. the average (and last year’s) 25% for this week. Japan purchased 98,536 MT of US origin wheat in the MOA tender. Analysts from Strategie Grains estimate 2017 soft wheat production in the EU at 141.6 MMT, 1.1 MMT lower from their previous projection due to heat and drought issues. They also show an estimated 24.4 MMT for exports, 2.6 MMT less than their last estimate.

Live cattle futures ended Thursday trade with losses of 10 cents to $2 (nearby contracts), as back months were higher. Feeder cattle futures showed gains of 12.5 to 95 cents in most contracts. The CME feeder cattle index was down $1.19 on June 14 at $152.73. Wholesale beef prices were lower in the afternoon report, with choice boxes $1.29 lower at $249.74. Select was down 13 cents, with an average of $220.53. Cash cattle exchanged hands at around $130 in NE on Wednesday. There were a few sales of $128 in the South on Thursday. Estimated FI cattle slaughter through Thursday was 467,000 head, up 1,000 from last week and 24,000 head more than the same week a year ago. Beef export shipments were 17.1% above last week at 14,502 MT. The first official shipment of US beef is making its way to China via air, and is seen as a test of the customs system. Currently the total US export commitments for 2017 are 11.9% above last year.



Lean hog futures posted losses of 52.5 cents to $1.475 on Thursday. The CME Lean Hog Index for 6/13 was up another 94 cents to $82.10. The USDA pork carcass cutout value was 17 cents lower in the afternoon report, with a weighted average of $94.90. The loin, picnic, and rib primal cuts were all lower. The national base hog carcass price was $1.60 higher with a weighted average of $83.87 in the afternoon report. Prices ranged from $78.00-$86.00. Through Thursday, estimated week to date FI hog slaughter was 1,710,000 head, 44,000 fewer than last week but now 5,000 head above last year. The USDA reported weekly pork exports picked up to 21,007 MT, a 5.9% increase over last week. Total pork export commitments YTD are now 5% ahead of last year at this time.

Cotton futures are 10 lower to 16 higher in the early going here on Friday. They lost 119 to 170 points in most contracts on Thursday. Pressure came from a sharply higher dollar, as it was up 542 points. The USDA 2017/18 upland cotton export sales for the week of June 8 were well above last year at 197,598 RB. Shipments of old crop upland cotton were down 26.2% wk/wk at 233,257 RB, but 65.66% larger than last year. Total upland cotton export commitments are 65.3% larger than last year. They are 103% of the USDA, projected export total, vs. 100% last year and the average of 105%. The new AWP is 67.31 cents/lb through next Thursday, down 72 points from the previous week. China sold just 14,200 MT of the 29,900 MT of cotton offered at an auction of state reserves on Thursday.






Market Commentary provided by:

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