Afternoon Market Highlights


  • First notice day for May grains and oilseeds is on Tuesday, April 30th. Check your positions!
  • The U.S. GDP for the first quarter was 3.2%, above expectations.
  • The annual Wheat Quality Council’s HRW tour begins next week. CHS Hedging will have a scout on the tour and will be reporting on what they find in the fields of Kansas. Follow us on Twitter at @hedgeit.
  • CHS Hedging is offering Energy and Grain Hedging classes at the Inver Grove Heights office in LH June.  Check out our website at for details and registration.


Corn was higher again today to end the week. The strength in corn can be tied to poor weather in the corn belt of the U.S. If the weather is as wet as predicted, we could see less corn acres than were originally expected by the USDA. For the week, May corn lost 7 ¼ cents. The speculators also have added to their short position, which is at a new record.

  • Crop Progress will be released Monday at 3:00 pm CDT, with estimates for corn planting near 15%.
  • The commitment of traders report shows speculators net short 334,300 contracts.
  • The European Commission raised estimates for corn exports to 21.5 mmt from 21.0 mmt, and slightly cut corn production to 68.3 mmt from 68.4 mmt.
  • South African corn stocks were at 3.394 mmt for the end of March versus 4.216 mmt at the end of February.
  • Closes: July at $3.61 ¼ up 4; September at $3.69 ½ up 4; December at $3.80 ¾ up 3 ½.
  • Spreads: K/N 10 cent carry; N/U 8 cent carry; U/Z 11 ¼ cent carry.


Soybeans were lower today amidst news of poor weather conditions in the U.S., which could lead to more acres going to beans. There is also the looming concerns regarding the large grain stocks in the U.S., which helped to further pressure prices. The July soybeans are within a few pennies of their contract low of $8.63 ¼. For the week, May soybeans lost 26 ¾ cents. The speculators have also added to their short position, and are close to record short.

  • Crop progress will be released Monday at 3:00 pm CT, with estimates for bean planting near 3%.
  • The commitment of traders report shows speculators net short 146,200 contracts of soybeans.
  • A Reuter's poll sees Brazil’s soybean crop at 115.46 mmt versus 114.21 mmt in a previous poll in March.
  • Closes: July at $8.64 down 5 ¾; September at $8.78 ½ down 5 ¾; November at $8.87 ¾ down 5 ½.
  • Spreads: K/N 13 ½ cent carry; N/Q 6 cent carry; Q/X 14 ½ cent carry.


The wheat markets were mostly lower today, with the exception of Chicago wheat. The bump in Chicago prices can be attributed to spillover strength from corn, as well as talk of poor stands in the soft red winter wheat. The May Minneapolis contract broke through the $5.00 support level today, and closed at $4.97 ¼. Kansas City wheat broke through its $4.00 level to $3.99 ½ before closing at $4.00 ¼. The spring wheat weakness could be due to planters rolling in spring wheat country, which will help add to the already large stocks. The market is further depressed due to Canada’s increased spring wheat acres.

  • The commitment of traders report shows speculators net short 104,900 contracts of Chicago wheat and net short 48,300 contracts of Kansas City wheat.
  • The European Commission raised its estimates for wheat exports to 21.0 mmt vs 19.0 mmt, and increased wheat production estimates to 141.3 mmt from 140.2 mmt.
  • Chicago: July at $4.42 ½ up ¼; September at $4.50 ¼ up 1; December at $4.67 ¼ up 1 ¼.
  • Kansas City: July at $4.08 down 3 ½; September at $4.18 ¾ down 2 ½; December at $4.40 ¼ down 2 ¼.
  • Minneapolis: July $5.10 ½ down 2; September at $5.20 down 2; December at $5.35 ¼ down 2 ½.
  • Spreads: Chicago K/N 7 ½ cent carry; Kansas City K/N 7 ¾ cent carry; Minneapolis 13 ½ cent carry.


The livestock markets were mostly lower today. Hogs continued their downward trend today, with cut outs remaining firm but some of the products fell lower. Bellies had a large swing in prices, and they are down $41.31 today from yesterday morning. Lean hogs will resume their normal trading limits of $3.00 per cwt on Monday. Cattle were mostly lower, with the front month in both feeders and live closing higher. Boxes have remained firm, although they were slightly lower today.

  • Feeder closes: May at $143.95 up 0.20; August at $152.85 down 0.475; September at $153.85 down 0.575.
  • Live closes: April at $124.55 up 0.525; June at $115.05 down 0.325; August at $112.65 down 0.175.
  • Lean hog closes: May at $87.00 down 0.85; June at $88.75 down 1.2; July at $93.45 down 1.425.
  • Packer margins were $128.60 for beef and a negative $5.05 on pork.
  • Morning pork product values on 195 loads: Carcass cutouts at $85.29 up 1.57; loins at $75.65 down 1.51; ribs at $156.14 down 2.95; hams at $74.09 up 7.93; bellies at $126.61 down 4.06.
  • Morning boxed beef values on 43 loads: Choice at 232.90 down 0.03; Selects at $218.96 down 0.79.
  • Today’s slaughter is estimated at 114,000 cattle and 451,000 hogs.