AgriVisor Morning MarketWatch

Thursday, August 18, 2016
***** Corn futures flat; soybeans down 9 1/2 to 11 1/2 cents; Chicago wheat off 1 1/2 to 2 1/2. *****

   # Corn and wheat futures are flat on limited overnight news and light trading volume.  Soybeans are on the defensive as the soyoil rally stalls.  
   # Traders are prepared to see another large weekly tally of soybean sales, maybe something up to 1.8 million tons.  New corn sales are expected to total around 1 million tons while wheat sales approach 500,000 tons.  The weekly export report is issued every Thursday at 7:30am central.  
   # The NOAA maps shifted somewhat wetter for the West on yesterday afternoons run.  Government meteorologists have low confidence in this particular issue of the 6-10 and 8-14 day outlooks.  
   # August weather has been favorable for most growers across the Midwest.  Too much water will stir up greater disease worry if heavy rains fall again soon over fields in SE Missouri, S Illinois, and S Indiana.
   # The middle weeks of August are crop tour season.  Tours organized by various cooperatives around central Illinois have been tallying record yield estimates.  Market participants will keep an eye on results from Pro Farmer’s annual crop tour, which runs August 22-25.
   # Soybean oil starts off weaker this morning as futures correct back from technically overbought territory.  The most active December soybean oil contract has closed higher in 11 of 13 sessions in August.  Profit-taking was also encouraged on a fundamental level as traders observed weakness in the Asian palm oil market.
   # The string of daily soybean sales has been notable and should continue to propel the market higher if it continues with such strength; however, new-crop sales started slow in the spring and early-summer months and cumulative sales now stand at 26 percent of the USDA estimate versus a five-year average of 32 percent. 
   # Estimates have farmers in Argentina possibility planting 25-30 percent more corn acres this season as they bring pasture land into production.  There will also be expected a small switch to corn from soybeans as the latter crop might not enjoy the export tax cut previously promised by the government.  Argentina grew corn on about 9 million acres last year.    
   # Yesterday’s release of minutes from the July Fed meeting has traders pricing in slightly lower odds for an interest rate hike yet in 2016 and so treasures are taking on a firmer bias while the dollar index drops moderately.  

***** Live cattle futures likely to start steady/weaker but with limited downside; hogs look to benefit from follow-thru buying. ***** 

   # Cash cattle started trading light volume near $118 live, which was disappointing relative to last week and versus expectations, but also still a considerable premium the board.  October live futures gave up technical support from the 20- and 50-day moving averages on Wednesday and heads for a test of support from a recent low at $111.22.  
   # Hog traders are weighing a continued acceleration for pork production against expectations for a demand push ahead of Labor Day Weekend.  Futures are still technically weak but selling pressure is diminishing.