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AgriCharts Market Commentary
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Corn futures finished the day with most contracts in red, but by less than a penny. The December contract posted an 11.75 cent trading range on the day, and had a weekly loss of more than 9 cents. December corn options expired today. Year to date Chinese corn imports are up 5.2% from a year ago despite restrictions on US purchases. Much of the corn has come from Ukraine. This morning, the EPA officially withdrew its proposal to reduce the ethanol mandate, stating that it will delay making a final decision regarding the 2014 mandate until next year. USDA announced 132,000 MT of corn was sold to unknown destinations as reported by private exporters this morning. The weekly Commitment of Traders report from the CFTC showed managed money accounts adding 147 contracts to their net long position, which was reported at 186,954 contracts as of the Tuesday close.
Soybean futures posted a 26.5 cent trading range on the day, and a 38.25 cent trading range on the week. The January contract ended the day with an 18.5 cent gain, and was also that much higher on the week. The meal market traded on both sides of UNCH today too, with the December contract ending the day $7.60 higher, but ended the week with a loss of $1.70. Higher product value allowed beans to extend their gains today in the face of a sharply stronger US dollar. Argentine soybean planting is now estimated to be 35% completed. According to the CFTC, the managed money accounts had decreased their net long position in soybeans by 10,620 contracts as of the Tuesday close, which brought them to a net long position of 30,733 contracts. They were shown with both less longs and more shorts than in the previous week.
Wheat futures were mostly UNCH to slightly higher on the day, but were down on the week. CHI wheat was down 6.5 cents, and MPLS wheat lost 8 cents, but KC wheat lost less than two cents. December options expired today. As of the Tuesday close, managed money accounts had decreased their net short position in Chicago wheat by 19,254 contracts, bringing their net position to short -11,881 contracts. Their net long position in KC wheat grew by 753 contracts from the previous week. The US Dollar index was up nearly 700 points on the day, which brought some added pressure to the export-sensitive US wheat market.
Cattle futures and feeder futures were mostly higher on the day ahead of the monthly Cattle on Feed and Cold Storage reports from the USDA. COF on November 1 were 100.45% of a year ago, placements were 99.12%, and marketings were 92.23% of what they were at this point last year. The average pre-report trade expectations were for 99.5%, 95.8% and 93.1% respectively, so it was bearish on paper. Beef stocks in cold storage were 85.18% of a year ago, and were up 0.19% from the previous month. The CME Feeder Index came in at $240.11, up 14 cents. Wholesale beef prices were lower on the day with the Choice boxes averaging 17 cents lower than yesterday, and Select boxes down $1.06 from Thursday. Choice beef added $3.06 since last Friday, and Select picked up $3.64 during the week. Some $172 cash cattle trade occurred today, with $268 in the carcass market. As of the Tuesday close, managed money accounts were shown to have added about 6% to their net long position in the weekly report from the CFTC.
Hog futures closed mixed again today. The average pork carcass cutout value lost 23 cents with an average for the day of $93.39. That amounts to a loss of $2.54 on the week. The CME Lean Hog Index was up 20 cents at $88.95. The monthly USDA Cold Storage report showed frozen pork stocks at the end of October were 92.88% of a year earlier, and down 3.68% from the previous month. Week to date estimated slaughter including Saturday is 2.232 million head; 13K head larger than last week, and 114K head smaller than the same week a year ago. Carcass based hog prices were higher today. The ECB average was only up 5 cents, the WCB price was 62 cents higher, and the IA/MN marketing areas led the way with a 69 cents increase from the previous day and a weighted average of $86.48.
Cotton futures were higher on the day, despite a sharply higher US Dollar index. December futures posted a triple digit gain, but ended the week 40 points lower. Cert stocks available for December futures delivery were reported at 22,729 bales as of November 20, down 1,320. Chinese imports from all sources are down 38.1% through October, based on customs data. The Cotlook A index is down 0.20 at 65.90. The CFTC Commitment of Traders report showed that as of the Tuesday close, managed money accounts had flipped to a net-short position. Their net short position was reported as -3,454 contracts, a net swing of -18,336 contracts from the previous weekly report.