Ag Market Commentary

Corn futures are trading 1 to 3 cents higher this morning. They ended the Thursday session with most contracts 2 to 4 3/4 cents higher. Numerous on farm bins and some commercial ground piles have been flooded in the Midwest. NASS is unlikely to be able to quantify such losses until the June stocks report. Forecasts are showing more moisture in some already flooded areas in the coming weeks, fueling ideas of more prevent plant acres. The USDA Export Sales report indicated that 855,944 MT of old crop corn was booked in the week of 3/14, with 60,000 MT for new crop. Combined sales were down 37.08% from the same week a year ago.

--provided by Brugler Marketing & Management

Soybean futures are currently 1 to 1 1/2 cents lower after seeing gains of 4 to 4 3/4 cents in the front months on Thursday. Meal futures led the way, up $3.70/ton, with soy oil 17 points lower. USDA reported that 399,528 MT of 18/19 soybeans were sold for export in the week of 3/14. That was down 47.4% from the same week last year. Old crop sales to China totaled 142,615, with 237,500 MT in reductions for unknown destinations. Soybean meal sales were tallied at 97,396 MT, with soy oil 5,548 MT. Both were in the middle of trade estimates from before the report.

--provided by Brugler Marketing & Management

Wheat futures are mostly 1 to 3 cents higher this morning with Chicago SRW the strongest. They closed mostly 1 to 3 cents higher yesterday, with MPLS May fractionally lower. All wheat old crop exports sales for the week of 3/14 were 298,574 MT in the FAS report, below trade estimates but 12.58% larger than the same week a year ago. South Korea bought 75,500 MT, with reductions of 45,000 MT for Singapore (switched to Sri Lanka). New crop sales were reported at 138,816 MT, with total forward sales for 19/20 YTD now up 11.6% over last year. Total old crop export commitments are now 3.1% larger than the same time in 2018.

--provided by Brugler Marketing & Management

Live cattle futures settled with 32.5 cent to $1.15 gains on Thursday. Feeder cattle futures were up 52.5 cents to $1.475. The CME feeder cattle index was up $1.71 on March 20 at $139.12. Wholesale boxed beef prices were mixed on Thursday, with the Choice/Sel spread at $10.94/cwt. Choice boxes were up 64 cents at $229.31, as Select was 26 cents lower @ $218.37. USDA estimated this week’s FI cattle slaughter at 476,000 head through Thursday. That was up 29,000 head from the previous week and even with this time last year. Beef export sales in the week of March 14 were 18,625 MT, with Hong Kong notable at 6,300 MT. Analysts expect March 1 cattle on feed to be reported at 11.663 million head this afternoon, down 0.4% from last year. Placements during Feb are seen down 3.8%, with Marketings up 1.5%. Cash bids have been light so far this week, with a few $126 in TX and $204 dressed in NE.

Lean Hog futures posted limit gains in most nearby contracts for the second day in a row on Thursday. They will have expanded limits of $4.50 again on Friday. Since the Feb 20 low, April hogs have rallied 49.9%! The CME Lean Hog Index was up $1.68 from the previous day @ $59.22 on March 19. Futures have been anticipating the rally in cash for several weeks now and are finally seeing the follow through. The USDA pork carcass cutout value was up $2.20 on Thursday afternoon at an average weighted price of $76.25. The national base hog carcass value was up $3.34 in the PM report at an average weighted price of $63.79. USDA estimated WTD FI hog slaughter at 1.887 million head, up 36,000 from the previous week and 41,000 above last year. Export sales of pork for the week that ended on March 15 totaled a healthy 29,302 MT.

Cotton futures are trading anywhere from UNCH to 11 points higher this morning. They were up 34 to 168 points in the nearby contracts on Thursday. May posted its highest close since December 19. The Cotlook A Index was up 50 points on March 19 to 84.65 cents/lb. The USDA Adjusted World Price (AWP) was updated to 65.83 cents/ lb on Thursday, up 173 points from the week prior. The weekly USDA Export Sales report showed 124,985 RB for old crop cotton, with new crop at 32,824 RB. Vietnam purchased 84,700 RB for old crop, with China cancelling a net 11,636 RB. China was the lead buyer of new crop at 15,400 RB, with Pakistan at 8,900 RB. Shipments in that week were the second largest this MY at 350,146 RB. The top destination was Pakistan at 79,000 RB, with 36,241 RB headed to China. Shipments do tend to rise seasonally for the next three months.

--provided by Brugler Marketing & Management

Market Commentary provided by:

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