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Corn futures are trading mostly 4 cents lower at midday on renewed strength in the US Dollar Index, with the trade unwilling to bet against favorable weather in much of the Corn Belt. Old crop exports are only 88% of the full year figure, and would typically be 95% by now. Private trade estimates have come out with the Brazilian corn crop 3 to 4 MMT larger that USDA was estimating in the May 12 WASDE. Ideas about low quality wheat theoretically coming into the livestock feed supply add some pressure with the eventual fallout on feed demand from bird flu still a looming question. Dow Jones reported April Chinese corn imports were about two boat loads compared to about one boat load last April.
Soybean futures are currently trading lower at midday, however bean meal is steady with July trying to rally. Private exporters reported to the USDA this morning that Thailand booked 109,400 MT of soybean meal for delivery during 2015/16. Total 14/15 export commitments for soybean meal are 98% of the total USDA projection for the full year, well ahead of normal for this date. Accumulated meal shipments are on par with the five year average, but there are still 2.524 MMT to ship, which is an 88% larger backlog than last year at this time. Bean oil export commitments are well behind normal for this date and the July contract is trading 54 cents lower on the session.
Wheat futures are trading lower at midday. The US Dollar Index is sharply higher mostly on a lower Euro. Some spec traders that jumped into wheat on the weather rally likely cashed in some profits ahead of the holiday. Private exporters reported to the USDA that Taiwan purchased a total of 101,950 MT of US wheat for new crop delivery. The majority of the purchase was HRS, but about 30% was HRW and 10% was SWW. Dow Jones says Chinese wheat imports for April were down 35% yr/yr, and YTD 2015 imports are off 73% yr/yr.
Live cattle and feeder futures settled higher yesterday. The COF report came out at 11AM CDT today showed 0.81% more cattle on feed than a year ago as of April 1. Placements were 95.38% of year ago, and Marketings came in at 92.18% of a year ago. Overall the report is friendly. The cold storage report showed beef supplies as of April 30 were 118.5% of year ago, but down about 1% from the previous month. Cash cattle traded from $160 to $161 in NE and KS, with dressed sales reported at $253. Wholesale beef prices were lower in the morning reports with Choice boxes averaging $1.42 lower and Select boxes off $1.32. WTD slaughter estimated at 453K head is on par with last week.
Lean hog futures are trading mixed from just 10 cents higher to 30 cents lower at midday. The cold storage report released at 11AM CDT showed frozen pork stocks on April 30 up 19.82% from a year earlier, and up 4.04% from the previous month. The CME Lean Hog Index crept up another 15 cents to $83.20. Pork carcass cutout values were down $2.05 in the morning report at $85/cwt. Loin and Ham primal cuts were pulling the most on the average. Cash hog base prices were reported sharply lower this morning with the WCB price down $3.62 and the IA/MN weighted average was off $1.84. Estimated week to date slaughter is 1.697 million head. That is 27K head larger than last week and more than 128K head larger than the same period last year. Packers are likely trying to pull some hogs ahead due to the short kill week next week.
Cotton futures are trading in the red again today, down 19 to 37 points at midday. Weakness in the Euro is supporting the US Dollar Index today, which is currently up more than 800 points. The Cotlook A Index is down 0.10, at 72.35. Accumulated cotton exports are at 82%, a couple points ahead of the 5yr avg for this date. Total commitments are 105% of the current USDA projection, also a couple points ahead of normal. USDA put the AWP at 52.00, resulting in an LDP of 0.00 for the week ending May 28. USDA also opened up import quota #15. The quota will be established on May 28, 2015, allowing importation of 14,667,427 kilograms (67,367 bales) of upland cotton into the US.