Corn futures are trading higher at midday. Strong export demand and more hot and dry conditions in Argentina are supporting the market. An analyst is China estimates that China could import as much as 1.7 million tonnes more in 2010/11 than earlier forecast. Gains are being limited by the rally in the dollar index and weakness in the stock market. March is 8 1/2 cents higher at $5.96 and May is 8 cents higher at $6.03 1/2.
Soybean futures have turned higher at midsession. The market has turned higher on talk that new-crop acreage in 2011 could decline. The market has rebounded despite a firming dollar and weakness in the stock market. Disappointing weekly export sales this week are also limiting gains. January is 6 1/4 cents higher at $12.95 1/4 and March is 6 1/2 cents higher at $13.07.
Wheat futures are trading higher at midday. Strength in corn and soybeans has helped pull wheat futures higher. Export news was supportive this week as the weekly export sales report was above expectations and Egypt and Jordan made purchases. Gains are being limited by strength in the dollar. CBOT March is 3/4 of a cent higher at $7.77 1/2, KCBT March is 2 cents higher at $8.14 1/4 and MGE March is 3 1/4 cents higher at $8.45 3/4.
Cattle futures are trading higher at midsession. The market is being supported by short-covering ahead of the Cattle on Feed report, which is due out after the close. The report is expected to show December 1 feedlot supplies at up 2.6% from year-ago, November placements up 5.3% and marketings up 10%. The weak tone in the cash market this week and losses in beef prices are limiting futures gains. February is 60 cents higher at $104.13 and April is 65 cents higher at $108.00.
Lean hog futures are higher at midday. Speculative buying is being attributed to ideas of improved demand for pork exports. Pork prices rebounded 99 cents on Thursday. Reduced slaughter the next couple of weeks could limit any strength in the cash market, but reduced supplies should help support pork prices. February is 83 cents higher at $75.40 and April is 75 cents higher at $79.70.
Cotton futures are mostly lower at midsession. The nearby contract is up slightly. Profit-taking from recent gains are weighing on deferred markets. But fundamentals remain supportive and March is trading higher. March is 154 points higher at 147.66 cents while May is 57 points lower at 136.00.