After the Bell | March 31, 2022

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Corn: May corn futures closed up 10 3/4 cents at $7.48 3/4 today and near mid-range.  December corn gained 27 3/4 cents at $6.83 3/4 and hit a contract high. Corn traders got a big surprise from USDA today, as corn planting intentions at 89.490 million acres were way below market expectations and down nearly 3.9 million acres from last year. High fertilizer prices and concerns about availability apparently significantly impacted producers’ planting decisions.

Soybeans: May soybean futures fell 45 3/4 cents to $16.18 1/4, while November beans plunged 49 3/4 cents to $14.20 1/2. May soymeal dropped $5.60 to $467.50. May soyoil plunged 228 points to 69.94 cents. USDA’s report data hit the soybean market hard today as March planting intentions greatly topped expectations. Hefty losses in the crude oil market contributed to the aggressive selling.

Wheat: May SRW futures ended Thursday down 18 1/4 cents to $9.72 3/4, while May HRW dropped 14 3/4 cents to $10.29 3/4. May HRS futures surged 21 1/2 cents to $10.79 1/2. U.S. wheat remains less than competitive on the global market, as indicated by the weekly Export Sales results.

Cotton: Cotton futures set back, with the May contract falling 4.15 cents to 135.69 cents per pound. Nearby May cotton futures began Thursday by matching Wednesday’s contract high close at 139.84 cents per pound. It then moved lower in seeming response to negative USDA data. USDA’s Prospective Plantings Report indicated U.S. producers plan to plant 12.234 million acres of cotton, which would be up 9% from last year and was 227,000 acres more than expected.

Cattle: June live cattle closed down 87 1/2 cents at $137.125 and nearer the session low. April cattle lost 80 cents at $139.375. May feeder cattle closed down $2.35 at $166.55 and nearer the session low. Some profit-taking from the shorter-term speculators in the futures markets pressured live and feeder cattle today, following recent gains. Feeder cattle were also pressured by gains in the corn futures today, as well as their premium to the cash index.  

Hogs: Hog futures posted sharp losses and ended low-range. April hogs dropped $2.775 to $101.75. June hogs plunged $3.60 to $120.625. Hog futures opened sharply higher this morning in reaction to Wednesday’s bullish Hogs & Pigs Report. But the strong start failed to trigger additional buying and sellers quickly surfaced.


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