Ag Market Commentary

Corn futures are trading steady to fractionally mixed on Wednesday. The average trade guess is for Brazil production to be trimmed 3.4 MMT to 91.6 MMT and Argentina at 36.5 MMT, down 2.5 in Thursday’s monthly USDA report. World ending stocks are expected to be cut by 3.73 MMT to 199.36 MMT on lower world production and US ending stocks. The weekly EIA report showed daily ethanol production at 1.057 barrels per day during the week of 3/2. That was 13,000 bpd above the previous week, as all regions showed a buildup in ethanol stocks. The total number rose 165,000 barrels to 23.144 million barrels. The USDA is expected to show 1-1.5 MMT in old crop export sales for the week of March 1 tomorrow, with new crop at 0-100,000 MT.

Mar 18 Corn is at $3.80 1/2, up 3/4 cent,

May 18 Corn is at $3.88 1/2, up 1/4 cent,

Jul 18 Corn is at $3.95 1/2, unch ,

Sep 18 Corn is at $4.00 1/4, down 1/4 cent

Soybean futures are currently 3 to 7 cents lower at midday on profit taking ahead of Thursday’s USDA report. Nearby Soymeal futures are down $3.20/ton, with front month soy oil down 30 cents. Analysts are expecting that the USDA will raise Brazilian production 1.9 to 113.9 MMT. That is estimated to be more than offset by a 5.5 MMT drop in Argentine production to 48.5 MMT. Some trade estimates are as high as 117 MMT for Brazil, however. World ending stocks for 17/18 are seen at 95.5 on that lower Argentine production, down 2.64 MMT from February. Export sales are projected to range 0.9 to 1.4 MMT in Thursday’s USDA report, with 100,000-300,000 MT for new crop.

Mar 18 Soybeans are at $10.58 1/2, down 6 cents,

May 18 Soybeans are at $10.68 1/2, down 6 1/4 cents,

Jul 18 Soybeans are at $10.77 1/4, down 5 3/4 cents,

Aug 18 Soybeans are at $10.76 3/4, down 4 1/4 cents,

Mar 18 Soybean Meal is at $381.30, down $3.20

Mar 18 Soybean Oil is at $32.00, down $0.30

Wheat futures are mostly a penny to 3 3/4 cents lower in most CBT and KC contracts on Wednesday. A few forecasts are showing rain chances across the Southern Plains in the next couple weeks. The 7-day QPF is dry. Analysts are expecting to see the old crop US ending stocks number slightly higher at 1.015 bbu in Thursday’s USDA WASDE report. World ending stocks are seen at 265.63 MMT, down a slight 0.47 MMT. The USDA Export Sales report will also be released on Thursday at 7:30 a.m. CST, with trade estimates running 200,000-500,000 MT for old crop. Last week’s report showed sales of just 191,122 MT. New crop estimates are at 0-100,000 MT.

Mar 18 CBOT Wheat is at $4.98 1/4, down 3 3/4 cents,

Mar 18 KCBT Wheat is at $5.27 1/4, down 2 cents,

Mar 18 MGEX Wheat is at $6.27 1/4, unch ,

Live cattle futures are trading 25 to 45 cents higher in the nearby contracts at midday. Feeder cattle futures are up 25 to 67.5 cents. The CME feeder cattle index was down 19 cents on March 3 at $145.25. Wholesale boxed beef values were mixed on Wednesday morning. Choice boxes were down 6 cents at $223.29, with Select boxes $0.25 higher at $215.45. Estimated FI cattle slaughter was 234,000 head through Tuesday, even with last week and 3,000 head larger than the same week in 2017. A few cash sales of $126 were reported on Tuesday. Today’s FCE online auction showed sales on 387 of the 474 head, with all lots selling for $126.

Apr 18 Cattle are at $123.250, up $0.425,

Jun 18 Cattle are at $115.225, up $0.450,

Aug 18 Cattle are at $112.725, up $0.275,

Mar 18 Feeder Cattle are at $144.675, up $0.375

Apr 18 Feeder Cattle are at $146.400, up $0.275

May 18 Feeder Cattle are at $147.775, up $0.675

Lean hog futures are showing losses of $1.60 to $1.95 in most contracts on Wednesday. The CME Lean Hog Index on March 3 was down 17 cents from the previous day to $67.52. The USDA pork carcass cutout value was 56 cents lower at $77.36 in the Wednesday morning report. The ham led the way down $3.46. The national base hog weighted average price was 9 cents higher at $62.61. The USDA estimated week to date FI hog slaughter at 910,000 head. That is up 5,000 head from the previous week and 26,000 head more than the same time last year.

Apr 18 Hogs are at $66.575, down $1.625,

May 18 Hogs are at $72.300, down $1.950

Jun 18 Hogs are at $78.350, down $1.600

Cotton futures are mostly 30 to 37 points higher in the nearby contracts, with Mar and Oct showing no volume. Trade guesses ahead of Thursday’s USDA report show 17/18 exports 400,000 bales above the February projection at 14.9 million bales. Expected increases in exports would help to trim ending stocks for the US 500,000 to 5.5 million bales according to a Reuters survey. The Cotlook A index jumped 315 points higher from the previous day on March 6 at 94.60 cents/lb. Cash sales on the Seam were reported at 7,220 bales, with prices averaging 72.49 cents/lb.

May 18 Cotton is at 82.8, up 37 points

Jul 18 Cotton is at 82.79, up 30 points

Market Commentary provided by:

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