AgriCharts Market Commentary

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Corn futures closed the day with fractional to 1 cent losses in most nearby contracts, as September was up 1.82% on the week. CFTC data on Friday showed spec traders trimming their net short position in corn futures and options by 4,743 contracts during the reporting week that ended on Tuesday, taking it to -24,962 contracts. Total export commitments are now 99% of the USDA full year projection, with 104% the normal pace for mid-August (there are always sales that can’t be shipped rolled over to new crop). Exports are just 88% of that 17/18 estimate vs. the 93% average, as there are still 6.849 MMT in unshipped sales with just a shade over 3 reporting weeks left in the MY. China sold 850,780 MT of corn from state reserves into the domestic market on Friday, totaling 21.49% of the amount offered.

Sep 18 Corn closed at $3.64 1/4, down 1 cent,

Dec 18 Corn closed at $3.78 3/4, down 1 cent,

Mar 19 Corn closed at $3.90 3/4, down 3/4 cent

May 19 Corn closed at $3.97 3/4, down 3/4 cent


Soybean futures rallied into the close to end the day with 4 to 5 cent losses, roughly 10 cents off their lows. Traders were taking money from this week’s 3.61% gains off the table ahead of the weekend. A little buying came late in the day on reports that the US and China are planning a roadmap to end the trade dispute by mid-November. That, of course, presumes that they will agree with each other’s proposals! Nearby soy meal was down $4.50/ton, with soy oil up 8 points. The large spec funds in soybean futures and options added another 2,641 contracts to their net short position as of 8/14. That took their net position to -58,924 contracts. Soybean export commitments are now lagging last year by 4.3%, slipping a little from last week. Compared to the USDA full year projection, they are 102% complete vs. the 104% normal pace. Actual exports are 94% of that number lagging average by 3%, with 4.718 MMT in unshipped sales remaining.

Sep 18 Soybeans closed at $8.81 1/2, down 4 cents,

Nov 18 Soybeans closed at $8.92 3/4, down 4 1/4 cents,

Jan 19 Soybeans closed at $9.05, down 4 1/4 cents,

May 19 Soybeans closed at $9.26, down 4 1/2 cents,

Sep 18 Soybean Meal closed at $330.10, down $4.50,

Sep 18 Soybean Oil closed at $28.23, up $0.08


Wheat futures posted 15 to 18 1/4 cent gains in the nearby winter wheat contracts on Friday, with MPLS 10 to 12 1/4 cents higher. A weaker US dollar index, down 532 points on the day, provided support. Later in the day on Friday, Mexico’s Economic minister stated that he expects a US/Mexico bilateral deal may be complete by next week. Friday’s Commitment of Traders report showed money managers in Chicago wheat futures and options at a net long position of 66,948 contracts. That was an increase of 2,361 contracts from the week prior and the largest reported net long position since September 2012. They also held a net long position of 62,652 contracts in KC wheat futures and options as of Tuesday. The Russian Ag ministry released a statement that they are not considering limiting exports despite rising domestic prices and expect them to total 35 MMT this MY.

Sep 18 CBOT Wheat closed at $5.60 1/2, up 18 1/4 cents,

Sep 18 KCBT Wheat closed at $5.65, up 17 1/2 cents,

Sep 18 MGEX Wheat closed at $6.08 1/2, up 12 1/4 cents


Live cattle futures ended the Friday session with gains of 75 cents to $1.60, as August was up 1.09% on the week. Feeder cattle futures were up 67.5 cents to $1.70. The CME feeder cattle index was down 70 cents from the previous day at $149.59. Wholesale boxed beef values were mixed on Friday afternoon, with the Ch/Se spread widening to $10.46. Choice boxes were up $2.28 at $211.38, while Select boxes were down 54 cents at $200.92. USDA FI weekly cattle slaughter was estimated at 660,000 head including Saturday. That is up 15,000 head from the previous week on larger weekend slaughter and 25,000 head above the same week in 2017. Sales of $109-110 were shown mainly in the North on Friday, with a few sales of $173 dressed as well.

Aug 18 Cattle closed at $109.425, up $1.100,

Oct 18 Cattle closed at $110.875, up $1.600,

Dec 18 Cattle closed at $114.625, up $1.425,

Aug 18 Feeder Cattle closed at $150.950, up $0.675

Sep 18 Feeder Cattle closed at $151.825, up $1.700

Oct 18 Feeder Cattle closed at $151.850, up $1.625

Lean Hogs

Lean hog futures saw another round of sharp gains on Friday, with most contracts up triple digits. Nearby Oct used some of the expanded limits on Friday to end the week with 14.51% gains. African Swine Flu rolling through the Chinese hog herd is helping support the market along with hopes for more US/China talks and Mexican hints about a bi-lateral deal. The CME Lean Hog Index was down $1.02 on August 15, to $54.21. The USDA pork carcass cutout value was down 86 cents on Friday afternoon, with the average carcass value at $66.77. The belly led the way again, down $6.10. The national base hog carcass value was down 86 cents in the Friday PM report, with the weighted average @ $40.52. USDA estimated weekly hog slaughter at 2.459 million head through Saturday. That is well above last week and the same week last year.

Oct 18 Hogs closed at $58.600, up $3.125,

Dec 18 Hogs closed at $55.275, up $2.825

Feb 19 Hogs closed at $61.650, up $2.300


Cotton futures settled the Friday session with most contracts down 30 to 41 points. A weaker dollar helped to limit losses in the cotton. December was down 4.51% over the course of the week. As of last Tuesday, spec funds in cotton futures and options cut their net long position by 9,688 contracts to 76,672 contracts. The Cotlook A index was down 215 points from the previous day at 90.75 cents/lb on August 15. The weekly AWP was updated to 75.45 cents/lb through next Thursday, down 422 points from the previous week.

Oct 18 Cotton closed at 81.750, down 38 points,

Dec 18 Cotton closed at 81.390, down 41 points

Mar 19 Cotton closed at 81.710, down 30 points

Market Commentary provided by:

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