AgriVisor Morning MarketWatch

Tuesday, March 13, 2018
***** Corn futures up a penny ahead of the break; soybeans higher by 4 cents; Chicago wheat up 2 3/4. ***** 

   # Grains trade mildly firmer overnight with volume light relative to recent weeks.  Fresh news is limited.  Ag commodities were little changed on China’s exchange.  Palm oil was stronger in Malaysia. 
   # The Kansas Crop Progress report called that state’s wheat crop 53 percent Poor or Very Poor, up from 50 percent last week.  Oklahoma’s crop was tagged 72 percent P/VP.  Texas 53 percent P/VP, a strong improvement from 64 percent the same a week ago.  
   # Monday’s run of the U.S. 6-10 day forecast turned slightly less dry for the Southern Plains.  The region still doesn’t look to have a strong rain event likely over the next two weeks. Cooler temperatures look to be the trend for the Midwest the rest of the month.  
   # The Australian Bureau of Meteorology changed the status of its El Nino/La Nina tracker to ‘inactive’ now that La Nina conditions have eased.  
   # Corn is in the ground in Texas.  Farmers there are estimated to have planted 26 percent of state’s crop through Sunday.  
   # President Trump signed an order blocking Chinese-owned computer chip maker Broadcom from acquiring U.S.-owned Qualcomm.  This news comes as the Chinese threaten to target soybeans in retaliation for new U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum.      
   # Outside markets are quiet so far this morning.  Investors are waiting to have a look at the latest reading on inflation.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average is rebounding but has much to claw back on its way toward the lifetime high at 26616.  The dollar has been seesawing lately – up with expectations of higher interest rates and down with talk of trade wars popping up.     

***** Cattle futures vulnerable to follow-through selling at the start; April hogs headed for a test of the month’s low at $66.42. *****

   # Defensive cattle futures reflect a bearish turn for the supply side influences, but a strong beef market shows nearby demand holding up.  The board may find some support until the cash market becomes more active, seeing as though futures hold a discount to the direct.   
   # A somewhat similar story for hogs, with futures on a downtrend but also supported by a resilient product market.  The bears suggest pork is close to breaking along with the cash trade.