GRAIN HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

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Wheat, Corn and Soybeans End Higher As Crops Disappoint

Grains and soybeans ended higher Tuesday after the condition of U.S. crops disappointed traders.

CBOT Corn for July rose slightly to end up 0.7% at $3.59 a bushel, soybeans for July were up 0.5% at $9.11 a bushel and wheat rose 0.7% to $4.53 a bushel for July.

Mexico Conditions Dow Chemical-Dupont Merger -- Market Talk

14:44 ET - Mexico's antitrust commission conditioned approval of the merger of Dow Chemical and Dupont in Mexico to the sale of certain Dupont insecticides and Dow plastics -- accepting as an "ideal measure" Dow's February agreement to sell its global copolymers and ionomers business to Korea's SK Global Chemical Co. Under its original terms, the merger would have risked hurting competition and pushing up prices in those markets, says the Federal Competition Commission, which conducted its analysis in cooperation with antitrust authorities in the U.S. and Europe. Dow and Dupont this month secured clearance from the DOJ, and expect the merger to close in August. (anthony.harrup@wsj.com)

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Wet Spring Could Dampen Monsanto's 3Q -- Market Talk

16:25 ET - Monsanto's (MON) fiscal 3Q report, scheduled for Wednesday morning, should give agriculture watchers a read on how the wet U.S. spring impacted farmers' planting -- and the top global seed company's profits. Recurring bouts of rain pushed some farmers to plant more soybeans, which can be sown later in the season compared to corn, where storms delayed some planting, and Bernstein analysts estimate a potential 2% of U.S. corn acres shifted toward soybeans. Any shift has big implications for Monsanto -- while the company's soybean sales have been growing, corn still is by far its biggest business. Analysts estimate Monsanto's 3Q earnings per share will decline 19% to $1.76 for the period. (jacob.bunge@wsj.com; @jacobbunge)

STORIES OF INTEREST:

California to List Weedkiller as Cancer-Causing -- Market Talk

15:29 ET - California on July 7 will add glyphosate -- the key chemical in Monsanto's (MON) widely used Roundup weedkiller -- to its list of chemicals known to the state to cause cancer, according to a notice from the state's Office of Environmental Heath Hazard Assessment. Monsanto has challenged the move in court, arguing that California's decision relies on a flawed assessment of scientific research by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, which in 2015 deemed glyphosate probably has the potential to cause cancer. Monsanto lost a court decision in the matter, and though the company's appealed, there's been no court order to delay the California listing. Monsanto, citing reviews of U.S. and European chemical regulators that found no cancer link for glyphosate, says it will continue to fight California's move. (jacob.bunge@wsj.com; @jacobbunge)

Nestle's Buyback Should Soothe Investors -- Market Talk

1640 GMT - Nestle's announcement that it will launch a share buyback of up to CHF20B ($21B) to be completed by the end of June 2020 should allay some investor concern about the packaged foods company's return on capital. In a poll of 75 Nestle investors last year, Bernstein found "huge frustrations on capital allocations, use of the balance sheet, share buybacks and M&A." Nestle leaves room for M&A in its announcement, saying should a big deal occur the buyback will be adjusted accordingly. The move comes after activist investor Third Point on Sunday said it had amassed a 1.25% stake in Nestle and is looking for big changes. (saabira.chaudhuri@wsj.com; @SaabiraC)

Now China-Owned, Syngenta Aims for Growth -- Market Talk

11:37 ET - Swiss pesticide and seed supplier Syngenta aims to reassert itself in global agricultural markets, now that it's completed its sale to China National Chemical. Executives say at a Basel event that Syngenta is considering seed deals in an effort to "become and ambitious number three in seeds" -- in the rapidly consolidating ag industry, Syngenta is counting on the heft ChemChina will add as the Swiss company competes with Bayer (BAYRY), which is in the process of buying top global seed developer Monsanto (MON), and the combined agricultural businesses of Dow Chemical (DOW) and DuPont (DD), which aim to seal their own merger in August, creating another industry behemoth. Those deals will yield divestitures, which could help Syngenta bulk up in seeds and crop genes. (jacob.bunge@wsj.com; @jacobbunge)

THE MARKETS:

Livestock Drops As Market Prepares For Summer Lull

Livestock futures ended lower Tuesday following Monday's limit up day in the cattle market. The market is now preparing for a seasonal lull that typically occurs after July 4th weekend as meat demand dies down.

CME live cattle for June was off 1.5% at $1.196 a pound and lean hogs for July fell 0.6% to 86.475 cents a pound.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

June 27, 2017 17:49 ET (21:49 GMT)