Corn futures closed lower on Wednesday. Trade was choppy today, but held within a fairly tight range. The market lacked conviction for either side of the market as traders wait to see how the last leg of planting develops. Planting delays are expected to trim yield potential. Wet weather is slowing progress in some areas of the eastern Corn Belt this week, although drier weather is in the forecast. July closed 1 1/2 cents lower at $4.26 and December was 1/2 of a cent lower at $4.49 3/4.



Soybean futures closed mostly higher on Wednesday. Profit-taking limited gains in the July contract after hitting $12 for the first time for a spot contract in eight months. Old-crop fundamentals remain bullish as stocks are tight and export demand remains strong. Speculative buying was supportive for new-crop as planting delay concerns remain alive. July ended 1 1/2 cents higher at $11.87 and November was 7 1/2 cents higher at $10.50.



Wheat futures ended strongly higher on Wednesday. The MGE led the rally again, with the spot contract hitting the highest level in eight months. Spring wheat planting delays in the U.S. and Canada continue to support prices. Winter wheat was pulled higher by the rally in spring wheat and the declining crop condition ratings last week. CBOT July closed 13 3/4 cents higher at $6.24 3/4, KCBT July was 13 1/4 cents higher at $6.75 1/2 and MGE July moved 25 cents higher to $7.79 3/4.



Cattle futures closed lower on Wednesday. Speculative selling and weakness in the stock market weighed on cattle futures. There was talk that retail beef sales over the Memorial Day holiday weekend were below expectations. Losses were limited by uncertainty about cash market trade this week and strength in boxed beef prices. At midday, choice beef prices were up $1.32. June ended 45 cents lower at $82.38 and August was 73 cents lower at $83.10.



Lean hog futures were lower on Wednesday. The market was pressured by steady to weak cash hog bids, weaker pork cutout values and the premium of futures to cash. Losses were limited by expectations for tightening hog numbers seasonally in the upcoming weeks. June closed 28 cents lower at $65.28 and August was 30 cents lower at $67.95.