Corn futures are called 1 cent lower amid profit-taking. Corn futures favored a weaker tone overnight after futures posted a low-range close yesterday. The U.S. dollar index is choppy this morning, providing little direction for the corn market. Traders are beginning to more aggressively even positions ahead of tomorrow's USDA Supply & Demand (S&D) Report. Traders expect USDA to raise carryover by around 17 million bu. from last month to 1.854 billion bushels. Traders also look for USDA to raise global stocks from last month.
Soybean futures are called 2 to 3 cents lower amid profit-taking. Soybean futures saw two-sided trade overnight, but filled yesterday's gap areas and ended lower amid profit-taking. Traders are turning their focus to evening positions ahead of tomorrow's S&D Report that's expected to show a 2-million-bu. increase in carryover from last month to 452 million bushels. Global stocks are also expected to rise due in part to expected increases in South American crop pegs. Meanwhile, China imported 4.51 MMT of soybeans in February, down 1.15 MMT from the previous month, but up 5.9% from year-ago, according to customs data. Also this morning, traders are mulling word of a possible trucker strike in Brazil beginning March 11. But the level of participation is uncertain as official truckdriver groups have not yet endorsed the strike. On a positive note, USDA announced China purchased 110,000 MT of soybeans for 2016-17 and an unknown buyer purchased 140,000 MT of soybeans split evenly between the current and upcoming marketing years.
Wheat futures are called 1 to 3 cents lower amid profit-taking. Following yesterday's low-range closes, wheat futures saw followthrough pressure overnight. Futures are also seeing pressure from rains moving across the Southern Plains this morning, although Kansas is largely missing out on needed precip. Due to disappointing demand, traders expect USDA to raise wheat carryover tomorrow by around 9 million bu. from last month to 975 million bu., but global carryover is expected to decline marginally. The European Commission projects soft wheat stocks to climb by 200,000 MT in 2016-17 from the previous year to 17.4 MMT due to softer demand. It pegs the soft wheat crop 142.2 MMT, down from 150.8 MMT in 2015-16. Also this morning, Egypt's ag quarantine authority said it will continue to apply a zero ergot standards on wheat shipments until new legislation is issued.
Live and feeder cattle futures are called mixed as traders reevaluate positions. Following yesterday's losses, live cattle futures are expected to see a mixed start amid position squaring. April live cattle are trading in line with last week's cash cattle trade, which is expected to limit price action this morning. This week's showlist is surprisingly smaller than last week despite only limited cash cattle trade last week. This gives feedlots a little more bargaining power this week and should limit pressure on futures. Choice beef values were 45 cents firmer to start the week and Select rose $1.75. But movement was lackluster at 106 loads.
Lean hog futures are called mixed amid position squaring. Another day of choppy price action is likely ahead as traders reevaluate positions. There is downside risk for nearby futures based on the premium they hold to the cash index, but a steady to firmer tone in the cash hog market is expected this morning. Pork cutout values firmed 45 cents to start the week on decent movement of 330.46 loads. Yesterday's decline in April lean hog futures was stopped by the 40-day moving average, which provides support near yesterday's low of $69.27 1/2.
Monday's general commodity advance pulled cotton futures higher as well. Bulls may also have responded to news that the USDA attache' had lowered his estimate of India's 2015/16 cotton crop. However, the fact that nearby futures set back substantially from yesterday's early highs seemed to set the stage for overnight losses. The May contract's inability to mount a significant challenge of 20-day moving average resistance, as well as the early morning drop below its 10-day MA suggests considerable underlying weakness. May cotton fell 0.71 cents to 56.67 cents/pound in early Tuesday trading, while the July contract dropped 0.68 to 56.67.