GRAIN HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

Features Dow Jones Newswires

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Corn Condition Improves; Spring Wheat Declines -- Market Talk

16:20 ET - Farmers have almost completed planting this year's corn crop, which improved in condition from the previous week, according to a USDA report. The agency says 96% of this year's corn was in the ground as of Sunday, while 68% of that was in good or excellent condition. That's up from a 65% good-or-excellent rating last week and above analyst estimates, but still lagging last year. Some sunshine after a wet planting season in the Midwest has helped the crop, analysts say. Spring wheat rated good or excellent declined markedly, however, to 55% from 62% last week as hot, dry conditions build in parts of the Dakotas. Analysts were expecting to see a decline of around 1 percentage point. (benjamin.parkin@wsj.com; @b_parkyn)

Grain, Soybean Futures Drift Ahead of Crop Report

CHICAGO -- Grain and soybean futures were mixed on Monday as traders positioned themselves ahead of a crop condition-and-planting report.

Corn futures for July delivery closed 0.1% higher at $3.73 a bushel at the Chicago Board of Trade, after fluctuating within a small range during Monday's session. July soybean futures also rose 0.1% to $9.22 a bushel.

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture will release its weekly crop progress report at 4 p.m. ET on Monday, updating traders on soybean planting progress and corn crop condition, which fell below expectations last week.

STORIES OF INTEREST:

Some Urban Farmers Are Going Vertical

In a factory parking lot in Brooklyn, a crowd of about 100 people gasped and murmured as Tobias Peggs cracked open the heavy metal doors of a white shipping container, allowing pink light to spill out from within.

The interior of the container looked like a dance club, or a space station: Strips of dangling LED lights glowed red and blue, illuminating white plastic panels. Leafy green vegetables grew from the walls.

THE MARKETS:

Cattle Futures Gain on Profitable Packing Margins

CHICAGO--Cattle futures climbed Monday while hogs slid, as traders bet that wide beef packer margins would keep prices in the cattle market high.

The HedgersEdge beef packer index was at $135.45 a head on Monday, compared with standard pork processing margins of around $30 a head. That extra profitability would allow packers to put more money into the cash trade for cattle, analysts said.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

June 05, 2017 17:44 ET (21:44 GMT)