TFM Midday Update 11-29-19

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Total Farm Marketing!

Thursday, November 28: The CME and Total Farm Marketing offices are closed.

Friday, November 29: The CME closes at noon, and Total Farm Marketing offices close at 1:00 CT.


Corn futures are showing strong gains in the early part of today’s trading session as Dec is 8-1/4 higher to 3.71 and Mar is up 7-1/2 to 3.80-3/4. Export sales for the week for corn are at 31.8 million bushels. While the overall totals are staying relatively neutral if not negative for corn, it has been a series of improving week-over-week sales as lower U.S. corn prices are becoming more competitive on the global scale. With ethanol production continuing to ramp up, the argument may be perceiving that corn demand may be improving. With this morning’s push, prices are showing some technical improvement, which could bring some short-covering and an oversold market.


Soybean futures are trading 1 to 2 lower this morning, with Jan beans down 2 cents to 8.80, while Mar beans are down 2-1/4 to 8.94. Weekly export sales for beans were at 61.1 million bushels, and export shipments last week were at 82.5 million bushels. That shipment total was well above the necessary pace needed to reach the USDA’s export estimate for the marketing year. Despite that, bean futures are still struggling technically on the charts. The main concern is the U.S. and China trade that has kept the sentiment negative. Today’s close could be key if prices can turn off this morning’s lows being supported by other grains.


Wheat futures are the strength in the grain markets today, with Chi contract showing strong gains. Dec Chi wheat is up 20-1/2 cents to 5.49, while Mar wheat is up 16-1/2 cents to 5.43. Charts are pushing through some technical resistance, bringing short-covering and triggering stops above the market. This is helping surge the wheat market higher. Weekly export sales were a respectable 22.5 million bushels and shipments at 16.4 million bushels. The shipment number is behind pace, but still trending up 5% from last year’s levels. In addition, global wheat prices have been firming, helping to bring some buyer support into the grain.


Cattle futures traded mixed to lower this morning. Dec cattle are 2 cents higher to 121.45, while Feb cattle are 42 cents lower to 126.27. The Feb contract did push to a new contract high again in this morning’s trade and is currently trading off of that mark. The cash market did firm again this week with trade 2.00 to 3.00 higher on a week-over-week basis. The strength in cash is being supportive on that Dec contract. In addition, the projected snowstorm across the northern Plains through the northern tier of cattle country is also bringing in some buyer support. Retail values are likely staying choppy today, but prices are still trending firm promoting strong packer margins and promoting cash trade.


Hog markets are trading with triple-digit gains as Dec is up 1.42 to 62.10, while the Feb hogs are 1.77 higher to 68.92. Despite early morning selling pressure on the technical side of the equation, another round of strong export sales in the pork market to China has helped bring some short covering in the end of the week rally. Chinese demand for U.S. pork has continued to grow as weekly export sales reported new sales of 23,100 metric tonnes for both this year and next year combined. Also, growing shipments up to 15,100 metric tonnes helped validate the demand for U.S. pork by Chinese markets. The contract has been pushing into oversold levels and may be poised for a bit of a corrective bounce as speculative fund positioning is moving to a near or possibly short position on this week’s Commitment of Traders report.


Carol Tillmann

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