Corn futures were steady to fractionally higher on Tuesday. Markets are marking time ahead of the USDA reports. Futures should continue to move sideways into the Friday reports. The market will react to them, but barring a major surprise the focus will quickly shift to early planting weather. May closed 1/2 cent higher at $2.22 1/4. December was unchanged at $2.54 1/2.



Soybean futures closed higher on Tuesday in limited activity. Traders are waiting for the Prospective Plantings report on Friday. The average trade estimate for soybean acreage this spring in the U.S. is just over 74 million acres. This would be about 2 million acres above last year's level. May ended 2 cents higher at $5.81 1/2 and November ended 2 cents higher at $6.10.



Wheat futures were slightly higher on the close Tuesday. Crop condition ratings improved only slightly in key winter wheat states despite last week's beneficial moisture. Winter wheat conditions are still far below average and down sharply from last fall. CBOT May was up 1 1/2 cents at $3.41 1/4. KCBT May was 4 1/4 cents higher close at $4.01 3/4 and MGE May ended 2 1/2 cents higher at $3.93.



Cattle futures closed lower on Tuesday. The market continues to sag lower under the pressure of bearish supply fundamentals. Last Friday's Cattle on Feed report reinforced the outlook for larger fed cattle numbers and lower cash prices through spring and into summer. April cattle were down 32 points at $81.55. June fell 62 points to close at $75.45. April feeder cattle were 5 points lower at $104.07.



Lean hog futures closed lower again on Tuesday, continuing the long-standing downtrend. Cash hog bids were down lower on light buying interest. Hog prices and thus futures may continue to drift lower until supplies tighten. April ended 30 cents lower at $57.45 and the June contract was down 43 cents at $66.35.