Corn futures posted solid gains on Thursday. USDA's Supply/Demand report was very bearish, but corn futures were pushed higher by the sharp gains in crude oil and gold and weakness in the dollar. USDA made surprisingly large cuts in demand. Exports were lowered by 100 million bushels and corn for ethanol was cut by 300 million bushels. Ending stocks were raised 350 million bushels while traders were looking for only about a 100 million bushel increase. March ended 9 1/2 cents higher at $3.51 1/2 and July was 9 3/4 cents higher at $3.72 3/4.



Soybean futures were strongly higher on Thursday. The Supply/Demand report this morning was relatively neutral as USDA left ending stocks at 205 million bushels. Crush was lowered 30 million bushels, but exports were raised that amount. However, the market was supported by the big rally in crude oil and gold and the drop in the dollar index. Weekly export sales reported this morning were strong and were above pre-report trade expectations at 29.8 million bushels. January closed 27 cents higher at $8.56 1/2 and March was 25 3/4 cents higher at $8.60 1/2.



Wheat futures ended mixed on Thursday. USDA's Supply/Demand report was bearish, but strength in corn and soybeans as well as outside markets helped stabilize trade. Wheat ending stocks were raised 20 million bushels to 623 million, while traders were looking for a small decline. In addition, weekly export sales reported this morning were sluggish again at only 8.8 million bushels. However, the rally in crude oil and gold and break in the dollar index was able to push some contracts higher. CBOT March closed 2 cents lower at $5.07 1/2, KCBT March ended 3 cents higher at $5.34 1/4 and MGE March ended 2 1/2 cents lower at $5.88 3/4.



Cattle futures rallied on Thursday. The discount of futures to the cash market and talk of steady cash trade this week supported trade. Weakness in the value of the dollar was supportive as it will benefit beef exports. But gains were limited by declining boxed beef prices and continued concern about demand given the economic problems domestically and globally. February ended 3 cents higher at $83.83 and April was 20 cents higher at $85.68.



Lean hog futures closed lower on Thursday. Futures premium to the cash market and technical weakness following Wednesday's losses pressured prices. Pork prices fell 75 cents on Wednesday and are expected to continue to decline as demand from wholesalers slow seasonally. February was 75 cents lower at $62.38, April was 75 cents lower at $67.85 and June was 25 cents lower at $77.60.