Corn futures are called 2 to 3 cents higher following overnight trade that ended that way. The market remains supported by a strong bullish demand bias. While trading volume will likely remain light, support is also expected to come from anticipation of index fund buying after the first of the year.

Soybean futures are called 7 to 9 cents higher. Overnight trade ended 7 to 9 cents higher. After some consolidation yesterday, the market looks ready to push higher again today. Fund buying will be supportive as traders look ahead to the New Year when index funds are expected to be buying. Soybean oil has been supported recently by strong palm oil prices, which have risen to eight year highs.

Wheat futures are called 2 to 3 cents higher. Overnight CBOT trade was 2 1/4 to 2 3/4 cents higher and the KCBT was 1/4 lower to 2 cents higher. Speculative profit-taking weighed on prices yesterday, but expected strength in corn and soybeans should help prices firm again today. Gains will be limited by forecasts for precipitation in the Plains and continued concern about sluggish export demand.

Cattle futures are called steady to higher. The futures market rallied sharply on Wednesday due to forecasts for a winter storm in the Plains and strength in beef prices. Boxed beef prices were $1.88 to $2.75 higher. We look for some follow-through buying this morning.

Lean hog futures are called steady to mixed. USDA released the quarterly Hogs and Pigs report after the close yesterday that showed modest expansion, as was expected. As of December 1, the number of market hogs was up 1% from a year earlier, and the number of breeding hogs was 1.3% higher. We look for choppy trade in light holiday trade.