Grain markets are mixed overnight with corn and Chicago wheat lower while soybeans, products and hard wheat contracts are higher. Export sales should help set the tone early. Soybeans on China’s Dalian Exchange were down 0.55% while soybean meal was down 0.77% and corn was down 0.61%.
Closer-month live cattle contracts fluctuated nearly $1.00 Wednesday but closed not far from unchanged. Later contracts showed more strength as the long-term outlook looked more positive. Feedlots decided not to hold out this week to the end before inking some sales. The weekly Export Sales report Thursday morning will be important. Hopefully, exports will have picked up quite a bit and there will not be a repeat of the dismal report last week.
Hog margins are tightening but are still positive. Cutouts were down substantially Wednesday, which may cause packers to think a bit harder about how aggressive they want to be. Even though cutouts have declined, the projection of tighter hog supplies keeps them buying. There is always plenty of room in cold storage for pork to limit an oversupply of the market. Saturday slaughter is projected at 100,000 head.
Farm and Ranch Director Jesse Allen has more: