DTN's Quick Takes

Periodic Updates on the Grains, Livestock Futures Markets

Illustration by Nick Scalise


OMAHA (DTN) -- As we near the close, May corn is down 1 1/4 cents, May soybeans are up 9 cents and July K.C. wheat is down 6 cents. In spite of seeing some price movement Thursday, trading volume remains low as traders remain cautious ahead of USDA's Grain Stocks and Prospective Planting reports, due out Mar. 29. NOPA's crush estimate of 153.7 million bushels is helping to support soybean's higher price, and rain in the forecast for winter wheat areas outside the southwestern Plains are part of Thursday's pressure on winter wheat prices. The March U.S. dollar index is up 0.28.

Posted 11:47 -- May corn is down 1/4 cent, May soybeans are up 11 1/2 cents and July K.C. wheat is down 6 cents. Soybeans are holding double-digit gains after the National Oilseed Processors (NOPA) estimated February's soybean crush at 153.7 million bushels, up 8% from a year ago and more than expected. May soybean oil is up $0.42, along with a higher canola price and ignoring NOPA's higher-than-expected estimate of soybean oil stocks, at 1.856 billion pounds. Outside commodities are lower to mixed, while the March U.S. dollar index is up 0.39.

Posted 09:46 -- May corn is down 2 3/4 cents, May soybeans are up 4 3/4 cents and July K.C. wheat is down 8 3/4 cents. Winter wheat prices extended their early losses, a possible sign that short-covering pressure is easing after several weeks of drought concern. Thursday's U.S. Drought Monitor showed extreme drought again around the Texas Panhandle and southwestern Kansas, and an area of exceptional drought in western Oklahoma. The Corn Belt looks pretty good with planting season approaching, except for moderate drought in southern Iowa and northern Missouri.

Posted 08:39 -- After the 8:30 open, May corn is steady, May soybeans are up 6 1/2 cents, and July K.C. wheat is down 3 cents. Winter wheat prices turned lower after 8:30 as traders assess a seven-day forecast that is still dry in the southwestern Plains, but shows precipitation on the way to the central Plains and eastern Midwest. Soybeans and spring wheat are modestly higher with early commercial buying. Corn prices are not showing any reaction to USDA's news that corn sales hit a new marketing year high last week.


Posted 12:18 -- Cattle markets remain under pressure, although prices have pulled away from session lows. Live cattle futures are holding 50-to-80 cent losses with limited activity seen. Strong gains are seen in most lean hog futures midday with May through July futures holding triple-digit gains. The focus on renewed buyer support in nearby and summer hog trade is helping to rebuild a sense of market activity.

Posted 10:46 -- Early pressure in the cattle complex has gained momentum through the morning with triple-digit losses seen in live and feeder cattle trade. This lack of support has created some concerns that long-term pressure may develop over the next couple of weeks. The inability to sustain recent buyer activity in front month futures will likely limit fundamental support. Lean hog futures remain mixed in a narrow range with traders pulling back from midweek market surges, while a few contracts are looking for some market stability.