Corn futures edged lower Monday on light speculative selling. Corn seemed caught between the sharp break in wheat futures and modest strength in soybeans. Outside markets like precious metals and energy were mostly lower, which also tended to pressure corn futures. March settled 1/2 of a cent lower at $2.20 3/4. May ended 1/2 of a cent lower at $2.31 1/4.



Soybean futures closed higher on Monday. Trade talk centered on concerns about dryness in Argentina and southern Brazil. The funds were noted buyers today as well. Gains were limited by declines in gold and energy prices. March settled 2 cents higher at $5.84 1/4. May ended 1 3/4 cents higher at $5.97 3/4.



Wheat futures closed strongly lower on Monday. The market was pressured by news that Iraq had cancelled its plans to import U.S. wheat because offers were too high. Much of the recent strength came from expectations for up to 1.0 million tons of U.S. wheat to Iraq. CBOT Mar was 7 1/4 cents lower at $3.48. KCBT Mar fell 15 cents to close at $4.15. MGE Mar was down 10 1/2 cents at 3.99 1/2.



Cattle futures ended sharply lower on Monday. The steep break was attributed to an unusually low volume of cash market sales last week and concerns that the northeastern snowstorm will reduce beef consumption. April fell 150 points to close at $89.10 and June was 107 points lower at $83.57. March feeder cattle were down 160 points at $108.05.



Lean hog futures ended mostly lower on Monday. Early fund buying gave way to speculative selling amid negative packer margins and the premium of futures to cash. Steady to higher cash trade and firm cutout prices on Friday helped the soon to expire February contract. April closed 13 cents lower at $62.68 and June is 15 cents lower at $69.95.