Cattle: Cash cattle this week $128.-130.00; dressed Neb. $204.00; boxed beef modestly (Chc.) to sharply higher (sel.) on very light midday volume; futures choppy again and once again found it tough to hold its rally. April anchored the June and even then, April not impressive pre-expiration at discount to the live. Does the June need to rally up to the April’s price? NO, but some will try as justification for it. As an aside, beef prices have been up strongly and understandable considering the packer’s need to shore up margins; however, beef movement seems to indicate weekend retail clearance wasn’t that good.
Hogs: Interior hogs early n/e eastern to sharply higher I/M and western corn belt, pork mixed but values rose overall; futures strong led by the May contract as western interior hogs bolt to within $3.00 of the $90.00 mark. While I said China’s bird flu problem (24th human death reported) will not likely mean more imports, other nations that have banned china pork might.
GRAINS & OILSEEDS:
Corn: Cranky day after new swing highs early overnight; profit taking, light hedging and some corn movement filtered in though weather forecasts coming in were uneven for plantings limiting the downside perhaps. Spreading May/Sept. vs. July also noted.
Soybeans: While corn has some justification for the rally, beans still clinging to the tight supplies and slow Brazilian shipping to keep squeezing the May contract. Otherwise a mixed, choppy session.
Wheat: Overnight and early here the market did not seem to be overly concerned about the U.S. wheat crop. Even the E.U. futures had just a modest rally and like me, suggested the rest of the world in better shape and likely will offset our crop ratings for HRW and delayed spring wheat plantings. Nonetheless, wheat likely then back to its old “whipsaw” days. $.30 cent plus day’s range so far beats out its brethren