AgriVisor Morning MarketWatch

Friday, April 28, 2017
***** Corn futures down 1 to 2 cents; soybeans off fractionally; Chicago wheat up 2 1/2 to 3 1/2. ***** 

   # Grains are mixed overnight with corn spreading actively featured.  Traders put a wrap on the month of April.  After whipsawing about, corn futures enter the last session with losses of about a nickel.  Soybeans posted a narrow range on the month and prices are flat for now.    
   # Today is First Notice Day for May grain futures.  Deliveries against corn longs were a surprisingly-high 1,100 contracts.  Soybean delivery notices totaled 1,015, Chi Wheat 447.  
   # Corn open interest fell by another high 55,000 contracts on Thursday.  Fund traders were seen covering an outright short position that had amassed to more than 350,000 contracts.  
   # July corn futures are trading an inside day so far, leaving $3.66 and $3.71 1/4 as points of minor support and resistance for today.  The contract is back behind support from a cluster of moving averages that include the 10-, 20-, and 200-days all within three cents of each other.  Heftier resistance comes from April highs at $3.74 3/4 and $3.79 1/2. 
   # The forecast has not backed off on chances for heavy rain across the Corn Belt this weekend.  The bulk of central Illinois has up six inches predicted for Saturday and Sunday.  
   # Soybean sales were strong on Thursday’s report.  Cumulative export bookings for the oilseed have reached 102.4 percent of the USDA’s projection.  Traders will still have to make good on shipping all of the beans out before September 1, but the pace of sales and inspections leads many to expect government analysts will have to raise their export target on a future crop report.   
   # Argentina’s soybean harvest is estimated to be a third complete after drier conditions have allowed the pace of progress to accelerate.  The country’s corn harvest is pegged at 25 percent done.
   # It was a wild ride for oil futures in April, with WTI crude climbing to as high as $54.14 per barrel before dropping to a low of $48.20.  Late negativity has been stirred up by observations of a strong build for gasoline and distillate products.  There is also some skepticism about Russia going along with a potential extension of the OPEC production cuts.    

***** Cattle futures may benefit from follow-through buying at the start, but those contracts have reached back into overbought territory on the charts; hogs look to open steady/stronger. *****

   # Cattle futures open up with a set of expanded trading limits after the board jumped on Thursday in an effort to catch up with a strong cash trade.  Live cash cattle deals are being struck in the low $130’s this week to maintain a strong premium over June futures at $121.52.  Strengthening choice cuts are also serving to show healthy demand from the domestic consumer.     
   # Some extra volatility has been injected into the hog market this week.  Early trades seemed to indicate an effort from the hedge funds to cover shorts while unwinding hog/cattle spreads.  Late-week action was directed by the rumors of the U.S. pulling out of NAFTA and the eventual dismissal of that talk.