Chicago Close: Wheat Down; Corn, Soys Higher

Wheat was mainly lower but corn and soybean futures both managed small gains on Monday.

Corn was boosted by short covering and concerns about planting delays following a spring storm last week that dumped yet more snow and rain on portions of the U.S. central Plains and Midwest. Traders are expecting this afternoon’s USDA crop progress report to show that 5-6% of the U.S. corn crop was planted as of Sunday, up from the previous week’s 2%. May and new-crop December corn each gained 1 ¾ cents to close at $3.62 ¾ and $3.90 ¾.

Soybeans managed gains on spillover strength from soymeal following the NOPA report. That report showed NOPA members crushed a total of 170.011 million bu of soybeans in March. That was the second largest total on record, only behind last year, and nearly 2 million bu above most pre-report trade estimates. May beans gained 3 ½ cents to $8.98 ¾ and November was up 3 ¼ cents at $9.31.

Wheat futures were undermined as the world’s largest wheat buyer, Egypt, passed on American supplies in a tender Friday – opting to buy instead from Romania and Ukraine. This afternoon’s USDA crop progress report is also expected to show a small improvement in the condition of the American winter wheat crop compared to a week earlier. On the other hand, worries persist about late spring wheat planting on the U.S. northern Plains because of the weather. May Chicago wheat was down a nickel at $4.59 ½, March Kansas City fell 7 cents to $4.27 ¼ and March Minneapolis managed a ½ cent gain to $5.31 ¾.

Live cattle and lean hog futures were both mostly higher today.

Source: DePutter Publishing Ltd.

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