Corn futures closed strongly lower on Wednesday. The market continues to watch South American weather closely. Light rainfall has brought some relief to Argentina recently. While warm and dry weather is forecast for Argentina the rest of the week, forecasts are showing improved chances of rain next week. The market fell despite weakness in the dollar index and strength in the stock market. March is 7 3/4 cents lower at $5.96 1/4 and May is 7 1/2 cents lower at $6.03 1/4.
Soybean futures were steady to lower on Wednesday. The market was pressured during the session by updated weather forecasts calling for improved chances of rainfall in Argentina. But losses were limited late in the session by talk of improved demand from China as soybean crush have turned positive there. Weakness in the dollar index also helped limit losses. March closed unchanged at $11.83 1/2 and May was 1/4 of a cent lower at $11.92 1/4.
Wheat futures traded solidly lower on Wednesday. Spillover weakness in corn and bearish fundamentals are weighed on wheat future. Export demand remains sluggish and global wheat supplies are ample. Precipitation in the southern Plains late this fall and so far this winter should benefit the HRW crop. The market traded strongly lower despite weakness in the dollar index. CBOT March ended 12 1/2 cents lower at $5.92 1/4, KCBT March was 20 cents lower at $6.53 and MGE March was 7 3/4 cents lower at $8.00 3/4.
Cattle futures closed mostly lower on Wednesday. The market was pressured by uncertainty about the cash market this week and on positioning ahead of the Cattle on Feed report due out on Friday. Declining beef prices and poor packer margins could limit prices that packers are willing to pay for cattle this week. February ended 30 cents lower at $123.23 and April was 15 cents lower at $126.65.
Lean hog futures traded higher on Wednesday. The firm tone in the cash market and the 48 cents jump in pork cutouts on Tuesday supported futures trade. Packers are keeping steady to firm bids as a relatively big Saturday slaughter is being planned. However, further gains in the futures market were limited by rising slaughter weights and tight packer processing margins. February closed 50 cents higher at $86.28 and April was 53 cents higher at $87.93.