Corn futures were fractionally lower on Thursday as consolidation trade continues. Gains in soybeans provided early support to corn, but gains faded later in the session. Weekly export sales were a little disappointing at 26.4 million bushels. Despite the slow week, export commitments for the marketing year total 496 million bushels, 165 million above a year ago. December closed down 1/2 cent at $2.37 1/4. March settled 1 cent lower at $2.51 1/4.



Soybean futures closed higher on Thursday. Short-covering from oversold conditions and a supportive weekly export sales report helped the market rally. Export shipments so far this marketing year are already 37 percent ahead of last year while sales are 58 percent ahead of last year at this time. November ended 4 3/4 cents higher at $5.45 1/4 and January ended 4 3/4 cents higher at $5.58 3/4.



Wheat futures were lower on Thursday. Sluggish demand for U.S. wheat remains a bearish factor. Shipments last week fell to only 7.9 million bushels, the lowest level since February 2003. New sales were also below expectations, falling to only 12.4 million bushels. CBOT Dec fell 7 cents to close at $3.90 1/2. KCBT Dec was 7 cents lower at $4.59. MGE Dec wheat was down 4 1/4 cents at $4.40 1/4.



Cattle futures closed lower Thursday. Fund selling continued to weigh on the market as momentum has shifted lower after setting new contract highs last week. Declining boxed beef prices and ideas of lower cash trade this week are bearish fundamental factors. October ended down 107 points at $89.25. December fell 60 points to close at $89.85. October feeder cattle were down 145 points at $115.30.



Lean hog futures fell again on Thursday as weakness in the cash market continued to take a toll. Hog marketings remain plentiful as packers have been able to fill slaughter needs despite lower prices. Pork cutouts have been pressured recently, but given the deluge of pork, wholesale pork prices are holding up fairly well. October ended $1.18 lower at $64.75. December fell 48 cents to $63.05.