Lean-hog futures were pressured throughout the session and eventually pulled down August, which had been the lone hog contract to find much support early in the day. In addition, high feed costs are expected to lead to more liquidation of breeding animals, which would put even more pork on the market this autumn and possibly into the winter, depending on what corn prices and distant-traded hog futures do between now and then. August lean hogs fell a fraction to 88.72, October also slid a fraction to close at 75.17.
U.S. live-cattle futures closed narrowly mixed after trading mostly higher throughout the day. In the end, there wasn't enough support to maintain the earlier gains. August live cattle closed unchanged at $119, August feeder cattle closed down 52 at $138.
At the livestock auction held Friday in Siler City a total of 746 cattle and 142 goats were sold. Slaughter cows trended mostly 1.00 to 2.00 higher; bulls were steady to 4.00 lower.
U.S. soybean futures fell Monday after weekend rains benefited soy crops at a key stage in their development, raising the prospect of better yields at harvest.
The lower soybean prices pulled corn futures down by a smaller degree, as the rains damped optimism about price gains for related agricultural commodities, even though the corn crop itself is at too late a stage in development to benefit significantly from rains.
Wheat futures pared their losses and ended the session slightly higher as traders continued to worry about drought damage to wheat crops in major producing nations like Russia and Australia.
August soybeans, thinly traded ahead of their expiration fell 48 3/4 at $16.07, September corn fell 7 to $8.03, September wheat in Chicago rose 2 to $8.93, and September wheat in KC closed unchanged at $8.96.
No. 2 yellow shelled corn trended 6 to 15 cents lower when compared to last report. Prices ranged $7.95-$8.80 at feed mills and $8.05-$8.90 at elevators. No. 1 yellow soybeans trended 43 to 63 cents lower and were $16.87 at processors, and $15.83-$16.43 at elevators. No. 2 red winter wheat trended 2 cents higher and ranged $8.28. Soybean meal, f.o.b. at processing plants was $573.20 per ton for 48% protein.
Cotton futures extended Friday's rally, with gains driven by the weaker dollar and stronger equities. The breakout to the upside has encouraged funds to re-enter the market, says independent analyst Mike Stevens. Monday's follow-through action was supported by ongoing dry weather concerns in the US and India. December cotton gained 178 to 75.72, and near-month October gained 190 to $75.12.
Gold futures edged higher Monday as a slight pullback in the U.S. dollar continued to push investors into precious metals. December gold rose $6.90 to t $1,616.20, and September silver closed at $27.86, up 6.2 cents.
Crude oil moved higher in thin trading Monday, as a weaker U.S. dollar buoyed futures to a fresh two-week-plus high. September crude rose 80 cents to $92.20 a barrel, September gasoline fell a fraction to $2.92 a gallon, and September distillates rose 1.48 cents to $2.94 a gallon.
Natural gas futures rose Monday, breaking a four-session losing streak as traders weighed forecasts for cooler temperatures against the steep declines of the past week. September Natural gas gained 3.1 cents to $2.90.
On Wall Street, stocks closed at three-month highs for the second session in a row on Monday, extending last week's rally on the hope for more assistance for the troubled euro zone. The Dow gained 21 to 13,117, the Nasdaq closed at 2,989, up 22, and the S&P 500 gained 3 ¼ to close at 1,394.