Corn futures were sharply lower on Monday. Spillover weakness from energy and metal markets along with forecasts for rain across much of the Corn Belt later this week were bearish factors. May futures closed 6 3/4 cents lower at $2.32 3/4. December settled 6 cents lower at $2.59 1/2.

Soybean futures settled lower on Monday. The market was pressured by concern that soybean meal demand will be hurt by the spread of bird flu in Europe and Asia. In addition, forecasts call for beneficial rainfall in the Midwest. May ended 5 1/2 cents lower at $6.00 1/2 and November was 5 cents lower at $6.22 1/2.

Wheat futures were lower on the close Monday. Weather forecasters continue to call for better chances for rain in the Plains beginning late this week and stretching into next week. The market was also disappointed that Iraq bought only 150,000 tones of U.S. wheat in a recent tender. CBOT May was 5 cents lower at $3.80. KCBT May was down 6 cents at $4.39 1/2. MGE May was 5 3/4 cents lower at $4.23.

Cattle futures closed lower on Monday. The market slipped to the lowest level since early September. Declining boxed beef values and cash trade late on last Friday at $88, down $1 from the previous week, pressured the market. April cattle were 32 points lower at $85.70. June was down 42 points at $81.27. March feeder cattle were down 37 points at $105.95.

Lean hog futures ended sharply lower on Monday. Cash markets were firm today, but ideas that the cash market will turn lower later this week as packer try to conserve margins helped push futures lower. Technical selling helped extend losses. April closed 122 points lower at $60.77 and June fell 97 points to close at $69.52.