Corn futures are called 1 to 2 cents higher. Overnight trade was 1 1/4 to 2 cents higher. Strength in the crude oil market overnight and continued hot, dry weather in Argentina will be supportive. However, gains are expected to be limited by sluggish export demand and strength in the dollar index overnight.

Soybean futures are called 5 to 6 cents higher. Overnight trade was 5 1/4 to 5 1/2 cents higher in most active contracts. Strong export demand, strength in crude oil futures overnight and weather problems in Argentina will be supportive factors. However, gains will be limited by ideas that Chinese demand will slow during their New Year celebrations and the generally favorable crop conditions for much of Brazil.

Wheat futures are called 3 to 4 cents higher. Overnight CBOT trade was 3 1/4 to 5 3/4 cents higher and the KCBT was 2 1/4 cents higher. Spillover support is expected from corn and soybeans and outside commodities such as crude oil. Gains are expected to be limited by the recent very slow pace of exports. Strength in the dollar index overnight is not favorable for exports. However, Egypt's purchase of U.S. wheat yesterday will alleviate some of that concern.

Cattle futures are called steady to mixed. Front end futures will be pressured by weakness in boxed beef prices, with Choice cutouts down $1.22 on Wednesday. Light cash trade developed in Nebraska at $132 dressed, down $3 from last week. But deferreds could be mixed as traders even positions ahead of the Cattle on Feed report due out on Friday afternoon.

Lean hog futures are called steady to mixed. Cash trade has been better than expected through midweek and pork cutouts were up 49 cents on Wednesday. But packer margins remain poor and cash market strength is not expected to hold up through the end of the week. Concern about the economy will continue to be an underlying bearish factor for deferred contracts.