Ag Market Commentary

Corn futures are mostly 2 to 2 1/4 cents lower at midday. A private export sale of 320,000 MT of 17/18 corn was reported to Unknown Destinations through the USDA’s daily system. NASS updated the US corn yield 1.2 bpa higher than December at a record 176.6 bpa this morning. The production increase of 26 mbu was limited, due to ~400,000 fewer harvested acres. December 1 stocks of corn were 12.516 bbu, above expectations due to the larger crop and 130 mbu larger compared to last year. On the world side, South American production was left unchanged, while analysts had been expecting to see a smaller crop. That caused an increase of 2.49 MMT to the world ending stocks now at 206.57 MMT. South Korea purchased 70,000 MT of corn on Friday, with the US the likely origin.

Mar 18 Corn is at $3.46 1/2, down 2 1/4 cents,

May 18 Corn is at $3.54 3/4, down 2 1/4 cents,

Jul 18 Corn is at $3.63, down 2 cents

Sep 18 Corn is at $3.71, down 2 cents

Soybean futures are trading 3 to 4 3/4 cents higher on Friday. Meal futures are down $1.50ton, with nearby soy oil 32 points lower. The Jan contracts expire today. US ending stocks for the 17/18 soybean crop were increased 25 mbu to 479 mbu this morning, as exports were reduced 65 mbu. Production of old crop beans was trimmed 33 to 4.392 bbu, on a 0.4 bpa lower yield at 49.1 bpa. The Quarterly Stocks report indicated December 1 soybean stocks at 3.157 bbu, up 259 mbu from a year ago and a shade under expectations. The USDA also increased Brazilian production 2 MMT to 110 MMT, while Argentina’s production was reduced 1 MMT to 56 MMT, all in line with estimates. That boosted the world ending stocks number to 98.57 MMT. Data from Chinese customs shows the country’s imports of soybeans during December 6% larger than last year at 9.55 MMT.

Jan 18 Soybeans are at $9.43 3/4, up 3 1/4 cents,

Mar 18 Soybeans are at $9.54 1/4, up 4 1/4 cents,

May 18 Soybeans are at $9.65 1/4, up 4 1/4 cents,

Jul 18 Soybeans are at $9.75 1/4, up 4 3/4 cents,

Jan 18 Soybean Meal is at $308.10, down $1.50

Jan 18 Soybean Oil is at $32.97, down $0.32

Wheat futures are currently 10 to 13 1/2 cents lower in most contracts on Friday. This morning’s Winter Wheat Seedings report showed 32.6108 million acres of winter wheat was planted last fall. That was down 88,000 acres from last year and is the lowest since 1909. It was much larger than expected, however. It included a reduction of HRW at 23.1 million acres, as both SRW and White was increased slightly to 5.98 million and 3.56 million acres respectively. Stocks of wheat on December 1 totaled 1.874 bbu, down 203 mbu from last year and in line with expectations. US old crop ending stocks were shown at 989 mbu, as imports were raised and feed usage was trimmed. World ending stock tallied 268.02 MMT, down 0.4 from December. A reduction in Australia’s carryover by almost 3 MMT offset a 2 MMT increase in Russian production (now 85 MMT). Russian wheat exports from Jan-Nov totaled 28.8 MMT according to the country’s customs data, which is 5.9 MMT larger than the same time in 2016.

Mar 18 CBOT Wheat is at $4.22, down 11 1/4 cents,

Mar 18 KCBT Wheat is at $4.26 3/4, down 13 1/2 cents,

Mar 18 MGEX Wheat is at $6.17, down 12 cents

Live cattle futures are mixed on Friday, with nearby Feb 20 cents lower and back months higher. Feeder cattle futures are mostly 40 to 97.5 cents higher at midday. The CME feeder cattle index on January 10 was $148.81, down $2.78 from the previous day. Wholesale boxed beef values were lower on Friday morning. Choice boxes averaged 40 cents lower at $208.67, with Select boxes down 67 cents per cwt at $202.28. Estimated weekly FI cattle slaughter was 472,000 head through Thursday. That is 7,000 head more than the same week last year. Quarterly beef production was given a 130 million pound downward adjustment for the fourth quarter of 2017 to 6.74 billion pounds. Total production for 2017 was shown at 26.175 billion pounds, with 2018 up 170 million at 27.760 billion pounds.

Feb 18 Cattle are at $116.875, down $0.200,

Apr 18 Cattle are at $118.925, up $0.050,

Jun 18 Cattle are at $111.150, up $0.150,

Jan 18 Feeder Cattle are at $144.225, up $0.400

Mar 18 Feeder Cattle are at $142.350, up $0.975

Apr 18 Feeder Cattle are at $142.775, up $0.925

Lean hog futures are trading 20 to 52.5 cents higher on Friday. The CME Lean Hog Index was up $1.18 on January 10 at $68.46. The USDA pork carcass cutout value was up $1.16 cents at $80.20 in the Friday morning report. The loin was the only primal lower. The national base hog weighted average price was down 3 cents to $69.87. The USDA week to date FI hog slaughter was estimated at 1,815,000 head through Thursday. Reports are showing that Mexico is threatening to pull out of NAFTA if President Trump starts the withdraw process. Pork production for 2017 was totaled at 25.585 billion pounds in this morning’s USDA supply and demand table. That was moved by a 25 million pound increase in the fourth quarter. Production for 2018 is projected at 26.960 billion pounds, up 45 million pounds from the previous report.

Feb 18 Hogs are at $71.175, up $0.200,

Apr 18 Hogs are at $74.150, up $0.325

May 18 Hogs are at $79.225, up $0.525

Cotton futures are showing sharp losses on Friday as traders are taking profits ahead of the long weekend. The US dollar is down a steep 617 points at the moment. The USDA showed the 2017 cotton crop at 21.26 million bales this morning, down 0.18 from December. Yield was cut 3 lbs/ac to 899, as exports were left UNCH at 14.8 million bales. US ending stocks were trimmed 100,000 bales to 5.7 million bales on lighter production. World stocks were reduced slightly to 87.79 million bales. The Cotton Ginnings report indicated 16.153 million bales were ginned as of Jan 1, a 2.149 million bale jump from Dec 15 and 16.6% larger than last year. The USDA Adjusted World Price (AWP) was increased 35 points to 71.21 cents/lb on Thursday. The Cotlook A Index for January 11 was 130 points higher than the previous day at 90.35 cents/lb.

Mar 18 Cotton is at 81.1, down 155 points,

May 18 Cotton is at 81.23, down 173 points

Jul 18 Cotton is at 81.32, down 168 points

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