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Corn futures are trading 3 to 6 cents higher at midday. According to EIA data, ethanol production averaged 869,000 barrels per day last week. That was down 25,000 b/d from the week before and the lowest since October 4th. Stocks of ethanol sank to 15.9 million barrels thanks to both the lower production and the largest weekly gasoline consumption of the calendar year. There were only 2 deliveries put out against the Mar 14 contract overnight. Preliminary OI was up 8,989 contracts, indicating fresh fund buying. CONAB estimated Brazilian corn production at 75.2 MMT, down from 75.5 MMT. They are still above USDA. Chinese sources suggest that hog producers there are still seeing losses, and not very interested in buying Chinese or US corn.
Soybean futures are currently 18 to 32 cents lower at midday. Rumors of China cancellations were said to be the cause of the early weakness which started during the globex session last night. Thus far no confirmations of cancellations have been reported. South American basis has been weakening this week, reinforcing suspicions that China did in fact cancel some nearby shipments due to port congestion at their end. There were 44 deliveries put out against the Mar 14 contract overnight, with Rosenthal being the largest stopper of 38 contracts. Preliminary OI was up 7,670 contracts, net new selling. CONAB lowered projected Brazilian soybean production sharply to 85.4 MMT late this morning, down from 90 MMT.
Wheat futures are trading 5 to 21 higher in the Mar 14 contracts CBOT and MGEX contracts. Rail logistics issues and political unrest in Ukraine both continue to provide added support to the wheat market. Preliminary OI in CBOT wheat was up a modest 826 contracts. There are also individual trader ideas that some SRW which had been protected by snow cover is now vulnerable to freeze damage, and HRW areas will see below normal precip over the next two weeks based on current forecasts.
Cattle futures are trading $0.32 to $0.50 higher. Feeders are currently $0.15 lower to $0.52 higher. Boxed beef prices are mixed with choice cuts up $0.44 and select cuts down $0.04. The Choice/Select spread is at $4.24. The cash cattle market is quiet with some light trading reported Tuesday at $144, and $236 for the dressed. . The CME Feeder Cattle Index was up 0.22 at $173.56.
Lean Hogs are trading $0.57 lower to $0.30 higher at midday. The April 14 contract is displaying the most weakness and is changing hands at $116.52. The pork carcass cutout is up $1.76 at $119.29. Cash hog prices from the ECB , WCB, and IA/MN areas were not reported by USDA. The CME Lean Hog Index is up $0.30 at $125.25.
Cotton futures are trading 25 points lower to 108 points higher at midday. The May 14 contract is displaying the most strength and posting a triple digit gain. China cotton futures on the Zhengzhou exchange for May delivery were down 0.60%. A lower US Dollar is adding support in today’s session, with the DXY down 0.19% at 79.58. ICE Certified stocks were reported 260,495 RB, with 758 new certs, 5 decerts and 0 bales awaiting review. The Cotlook A Index is down 0.05 at 97.30.