Agriculture Market Summary
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TDA Daily Agriculture Market Summary 4/4/14

Posted 10 years 56 days ago by

  • Feeder cattle steady to $3 higher; futures higher.
  • Fed cattle cash trade inactive; futures higher; beef prices lower.
  • Cotton lower.
  • Grains and soybeans higher.
  • Crude oil and natural gas higher.
  • Stock markets slightly lower.


Texas auctions reported feeder cattle prices steady to $3 higher with no changes to the very supportive market fundamentals. Feeder cattle futures were higher. The fed cattle cash trade remained quiet yesterday across all major U.S. cattle-feeding regions. Reports said that packers bought a few head in Iowa at prices $.50-$1 higher than a week ago, while in the Southern Plains, bids $2-$3 lower than last week “were quickly refused.”   Wholesale boxed beef values were lower for the fourth day this week. Estimated cattle slaughter so far this week is running slightly ahead of last week’s pace, but lower than a year ago. Fed cattle futures were higher. Beef export sales for the week totaled 13,800 metric tons (MT), up four percent from the previous week, but down six percent from the prior four-week average. The leading buyers were Japan, Hong Kong, Mexico, South Korea and Taiwan. Export shipments of 12,200 MT were up five percent from the previous week, but down four percent from the average. The major destinations were Japan, Hong Kong and Mexico.

Cotton cash prices and futures were lower, mostly because of bearish export data. Rain is in the forecast for parts of Texas and Oklahoma, but little to none is expected in the major growing area on the Texas High Plains. Upland Cotton export sales totaled 42,700 bales, down 36 percent from the previous week, 49 percent below the prior four-week average and lower than the weekly average needed to meet USDA expectations for the marketing year. The leading buyers were Taiwan, China and Japan. Export shipments of 246,700 bales were down five percent from a week earlier and 19 percent lower than the average. However, they were higher than the weekly average needed to meet expectations for the year. The top destinations were Turkey, China, Indonesia and Vietnam.

Wheat prices were higher after export data came in higher than expected. Dry conditions on the U.S. Plains from Texas north through Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska are also a concern. Wheat export sales for the week totaled 336,400 MT, down 16 percent from the previous week and 27 percent lower than the prior four-week average, but on the high end of pre-report expectations. The leading buyers were Indonesia, Egypt, Nigeria and Brazil. Export shipments of 523,100 MT were down one percent from a week earlier, but up two percent from the average. The leading destinations were Japan, Mexico, Indonesia, Egypt, South Korea and Nigeria.

Corn and grain sorghum prices were  higher after corn export sales came in lower, but very near pre-report expectations. On the down side, China cancelled orders for another 221,000 MT this week, on top of the 1 million MT it has already turned-back. Thankfully, increased sales to Columbia, Mexico and Japan have taken up the slack. There were also concerns that dry conditions could delay planting in parts of the Corn Belt. Corn export sales totaled 960,600 MT, down 32 percent from the previous week and 12 percent below the prior four-week average, but very near pre-report expectations. The major buyers were Japan, South Korea and Egypt. Export shipments of 1,425,700 MT were up 16 percent from the previous week and 36 percent from the average. The top destinations were Japan, Egypt and Mexico.

Stock markets closed mostly slightly lower yesterday following a round of mostly-bearish economic data. The Labor Department reported that new unemployment claims rose much more than expected last week. The Commerce Department said that the U.S. trade deficit widened during February, compared to expectations for a decline. The Institute for Supply Management service sector index came in slightly lower than expected, but still indicated an expansion. The closely-watched monthly employment report will be issued this morning.

Disclaimer: The information compiled in the Daily Market Summary is obtained from a variety of sources, including those available on the Internet, that are believed to be reliable and accurate, but are in no way guaranteed. This information is intended to provide only a summary of market trends and a daily snapshot of agricultural markets and economic indicators. It should not be relied upon as a sole source of market information. Commentary is the author’s alone and does not in any way convey official TDA policies.