Malaysian palm oil futures extended losses to a 6-week low on Thursday, as disappointing economic data from the United States and Europe cast doubts on global economic recovery and commodity demand. Palm oil futures touched a low at 3,417 ringgit, a level last seen on March 23, as investors reacted to a slew of data that signaled stagnant hiring and weak manufacturing activity.
May and Jul Corn futures finished 0.175 lower, the September contract was 0.11 lower and new-crop contracts were around 0.07 lower. Corn futures closed low-range, but off session lows. Funds were active sellers today, selling an estimated 18,000 contracts (90-M bu.) of Corn. Corn futures were pressured throughout the day by a combination of corrective trade, strong planting progress, favorable weather and outside markets. Jul Soybean futures posted a Key Bearish reversal day on Wednesday, rallying to a new contract high and then promptly falling to sellers. Other contracts also faced heavy selling heading into the close and finished 0.1775 to 0.295 lower. The nearby contracts' rally to new highs triggered a round of profit taking. Also encouraging this was CME's late announcement that it will alter its initial margin requirements as of 7 May.
US Agriculture Meats (Cattle & Hog) Futures Recap
Live and feeder Cattle futures posted mixed closes after a choppy price action Wednesday. Live Cattle futures started mostly firmer on the day, but were unable to generate follow through buying interest amid pressure from outside markets. The USD index was firmer, while commodities and the stock market faced general selling. But outside market pressure somewhat eased early this afternoon, allowing Cattle futures to finish mixed.
After getting off to a mixed start, lean Hog futures softened into the close to finish 0.875 to 1.725 lower, with nearby contracts bearing the brunt of the pressure on Wednesday. This closed May futures' discount to the cash Hog index, and then some. Pork improvement hopes helped the lean Hog market get off to a good start, reality caused the market to soften into the close.