The grain markets traded mixed Monday as the slightly improved weather outlook and nervousness on Greece seemed to largely keep a lid on futures. Weekly export inspections for corn were 839,824 tonnes, according to the USDA, compared to 1.041 million tonnes last week. The 6 to 10 weather outlook is calling for below average rainfall and above average temps for much of the Midwest, though parts of Indiana and Ohio appear to have more rain in their forecast. Corn crop ratings, due out this afternoon, are expected to be 1-2% lower the 68% rating last week.
Weather damaged corn and soybean fields are also harmful to hog producers. Rising feed prices mean higher costs of production for the pork industry. Recent higher corn and soybean meal prices have increased anticipated hog costs by about $10 per head. These higher feed costs shift the outlook from one of modest profits to losses of about $6 per head over the coming 12 months.
Technology has long benefited Chicago's futures exchanges, historians say, even though electronic trading is the final blow for its human brokers, rendering obsolete the "open-outcry" futures pits on the trading floor where they have worked for generations.