Corn futures were higher on Friday. The market was supported by spillover buying from soybeans and concern that dry weather is trimming corn yields in Argentina. But gains were limited by weakness in crude oil and ideas that USDA will raise their ending stocks estimate on Monday. March closed 4 cents higher at $4.10 3/4 and may was 4 cents higher at $4.21 1/4.



Soybean futures traded sharply higher on Friday. Weather concerns for the South American soybean crop triggered the rally as weather forecasts turned drier for Argentina and southern Brazil. In addition, traders expect USDA to lower their ending stocks estimate on Monday morning to only 186 million bushels compared to 205 million last month. March ended 46 1/2 cents higher at $10.36 and May was 45 1/2 cents higher at $10.45 1/2.



Wheat futures closed strongly higher on Friday. Spillover support from soybeans helped encourage fund buying in the wheat market. Traders were also gearing up for the USDA reports due out Monday morning. Winter wheat acreage will be released and the market is anticipating a nearly 2 million acre decrease in 2009 compared to 2008. CBOT March ended 17 cents higher at $6.29 1/2, KCBT March closed 17 3/4 cents higher at $6.51 and MGE March closed 15 3/4 cents higher at $6.80 1/4.



Cattle futures ended mixed on Friday. Weakness in the cash market this week kept pressure on front end contracts although most deferreds months were higher due to a short-covering. Packers slowed slaughter this week due to poor margins. Beef prices have been moving mostly lower, although at midday Choice cutouts were up $1.50. February closed 5 cents lower at $83.10 while June was 33 cents higher at $85.70.



Lean hog futures settled lower on Friday, except for a small gain in the February contract. Strength in the cash market this week and the $2.29 jump in pork cutouts yesterday helped the nearby close slightly higher. But deferreds were pressured by concern about the slowing economy and the affect that will have on pork demand. February closed 3 cents higher at $62.45 while April was 45 cents lower at $68.60.