U.S. lean-hog futures, too, were weighed down by questions of whether the current uptrend in retail meat buying will last much longer. Thinly traded May hog futures fell 35 to 91.05, Most-active June hog futures shed 85 to 91.32.
U.S. live-cattle futures at midday Monday reversed a climb to finish lower, as market watchers braced for a potential downturn in demand for beef. Feeder cattle futures slipped as well. June live-cattle futures, the front-month contract, fell 52 to $121, August live-cattle shed 57 to $121 May feeders dropped 37 to $138.
At the livestock auction held Friday in Siler City a total of 975 cattle and 86 goats were sold. Slaughter cows trended mostly 1.00 to 6.00 higher; bulls were steady to 1.50 higher.
The North Carolina broiler-fryer market was steady and the live supply was adequate to meet the moderate demand. Average weights were heavy. The estimated slaughter for Monday in North Carolina was 2,895,000 head compared to 2,864,000 head last Monday.
U.S. corn futures fell to one-week lows Monday, as drier Midwest weather forecasts eased worries about planting delays for this year's crop. U.S. wheat futures fell Monday, as rain showers this week are expected to benefit crops in the southern Plains, and U.S. soybean futures finished lower, as improving weather for planting crops in the Midwest revived concerns about a substantial rise in U.S. supplies this year.
May corn fell 20 3/4 at $6.78, July wheat in Chicago ended down 18 1/4 at $7.02, Kansas City Board of Trade July wheat fell 21 1/4 to $7.56, and July soybeans, the most actively traded contract, finished down 18 at $13.69
U.S. 2 yellow shelled corn trended mostly 21 to 25 cents lower when compared to last report. Prices ranged $6.87-$7.28 at feed mills and $6.57-$7.11 at elevators. U.S. 1 yellow soybeans trended 11 to 18 cents higher and were $14.49 at processors, and $13.54-$14.44 at elevators. U.S. 2 soft red winter wheat trended 18 cents lower, quoting $5.53 at elevators. Soybean meal, f.o.b. at processing plants, was $471.20 per ton for 48% protein.
Fruit and vegetable prices (shipping point f.o.b.): Greens: Demand moderate. Market slightly lower. Various containers bunched/loose Kale $7-$8, Collard, Mustard, and Turnip Tops $6.50-$7. Strawberries: Demand fairly light. Market about steady. Includes palletizing and cooling. Flats of 8 1-pound containers with lids medium-large $10-$14 mostly $12-$13. Sweet Potatoes: Demand moderate. Market about steady. 40 pound cartons Orange Types U.S. No. 1 $13-$15 few higher and lower, U.S. No. 1 Petite $10-$12 few higher and lower, U.S. No. 2 $7-$9 few higher and lower, No Grade Marks jumbo $6-$7 few higher and lower.
Cotton futures edged higher Monday morning, supported by anticipation of upcoming tightening supplies due to poor planting conditions in the U.S. as well as expectations for increased foreign demand. July cotton gained 87 to 87.30, and December new crop gained 104 to 85.95.
Gold futures rose on Monday in light trading, as investors bet on robust demand for the metal following last month's slump in prices. June gold rose $3.80 to $1,468, and July silver closed at $23.95, down 5.9 cents.
Oil futures settled at their highest level in a month Monday, after escalating violence in Syria stoked concerns about a wider conflict that could imperil oil supplies in the region.
June crude gained 55 to $96.16 a barrel, June gasoline gained 4.03 cents to $2.86 a gallon, and June distillates settled up 3.58 cents at $2.92 a gallon.
Natural-gas futures fell to a one-month low Monday as evidence grows of rising U.S. gas supplies. June Natural gas fell 3 cents to $4.01.
On Wall Street, the S&P 500 closed at another record high, pushing further above 1,600 as financial shares led the way after Bank of America’s settlement with MBIA. The Dow fell 5 to 14,968, the Nasdaq closed at 3,392, up 14, and the S&P 500 gained 3 to 1,617.