Stewart-Peterson Market Commentary

Closing Commentary - October 22, 2018

Top Farmer Midday Update

CORN: Corn futures are trading 1-1/2 to 2 cents higher, as prices are reflective of expectations for good export activity this week, rain delaying harvest toward the end of the week and a lack of farmer selling after prices corrected downward last week. Export inspections at 37.4 million bushels were considered supportive.

SOYBEANS: Soybean futures are trading with small gains of 2-4 cents. Traders buying beans and selling wheat may be a feature, but expectations of strong harvest progress will likely keep prices in check for now. Forecasters seem split on rainfall totals toward the end of the week, but the 6-10 day outlook on Wednesday and Thursday of last week indicated above normal precipitation for entire Midwest. This creates problems. Weekly export inspections at 42 million, while large, was about half of last year's for the same week. To date, inspections at 218 million bushels are down 40% from a year ago, which could partly be reflective of poor harvest weather a year ago.

WHEAT: Wheat futures are trading softer with losses of 3-7 cents on all three exchanges. Lack of positive news and a poor technical showing is weighing on prices today. This doesn't seem untypical for a Monday in the wheat market lately, where a lack of positive news allows an almost void in which prices to drop. Prices are still within their range the past two months, and we do not expect any significant changes. Export inspections at 14 million bushels were termed neutral to negative.

CATTLE: Cattle futures are trading 10-90 higher at midday with expectations for steady demand to provide underlying support. Product values are expected to trade higher early in the week as well. The technical picture looks friendly today, with prices holding the 40-day moving average on Dec cattle on Thursday, while Friday's trade activity was termed an inside trading day. Today's higher opening is a reflection of buy stops being triggered once prices pushed above the 21-day moving average. Bigger supply expectations would suggest prices probably are not poised to move higher.

HOGS: Hog futures are trading 17-80 points higher in line with gains in the live and feeder markets. The entire livestock complex has a firm undertone, even though we are sure there is a good cause or expectation. Perhaps the biggest supporting factor is that the hog index is at 67.22, near 15.00 above the Dec futures.

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