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Overnight highlights. Following are highlights of overnight trade:
Corn: 1 to 2 cents higher. Futures were mostly around a penny higher overnight, with old-crop benefiting from short-covering after yesterday's focus was on bull spread unwinding. The U.S. dollar index is stronger this morning, which limited buying overnight. Corn planting at 17% came in about as expected, with eastern and southern areas advancing more quickly than in the western Belt.
Soybeans: 8 to 9 cents lower. Futures were softer overnight due to negative outside markets to maintain this week's choppy trend. Futures were supported yesterday by fresh demand news and the lack of news this morning resulted in pressure. This shows the market needs a constant dose of fresh news to keep bulls interested -- especially when outside markets are negative.
Wheat: Mixed. Wheat was mixed overnight, torn between corn and soybean futures. Minimal improvement was noted in the winter wheat crop according to the weekly crop condition ratings. Strength in the U.S. dollar index will limit buying, as wheat is in a follower's role.
Live cattle: Higher. Futures are called higher based on increasing confidence a near-term low has been posted in the beef market. Beef values have risen sharply this week, with Choice values up another $2.21 yesterday and Select up $1.67. Movement improved yesterday to 218 loads. This week's cattle showlist is up from last week, but improvement in the beef market has traders looking for $1 to $2 higher cash bids.
Lean Hogs: Lower. Futures are called lower based on pressure in the pork cutout market. Pork values slipped $1.10 yesterday to push packers' profit margins back well into the red. The good news is pork movement picked up, with 120.5 loads changing hands, but with packers' margins suffering, cash bids are expected to be weaker again today -- pressuring futures.