Grain Futures Need a Dose of Fresh News

December 13, 2012 12:19 AM

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Overnight highlights. Following are highlights of overnight trade (as of 6:20 a.m. CT) and opening livestock calls:

Corn: 1 to 2 cents lower. Futures haven't strayed too far from unchanged yet today and have been choppy. But strength in the U.S. dollar index is contributing to a weaker tone. A lack of fresh export news is also weighing on the market, although no technical chart damage has been done. But if wheat continues under pressure, it could also weigh on the corn market.

Soybeans: Mixed. Soybean futures are pivoting around unchanged, but have favored a weaker tone in overnight trade. Improved weather in Brazil has served as a weight for the market this week, although ongoing strong demand has limited pressure. Traders will look to this morning's weekly export sales data for guidance.

Wheat: Steady to 2 cents higher. Following back-to-back days of sharp price pressure, wheat is enjoying light short-covering this morning to avoid doing any more technical chart damage. Traders are disappointed by the lackluster export pace and don't expect this morning's weekly export sales data to show much improvement.

Live cattle: Mixed. Futures are expected to be mixed as traders wait on cash cattle trade to begin. Some expect trade to be seen today as packers are thought to be short bought. Choice beef values slipped 39 cents yesterday, but are up for the week. Movement of 200 loads yesterday adds to this week's solid tonnage.

Lean hogs: Mixed. Pork cutout values slipped 83 cents yesterday to tighten packers' profit margins, although they remain in the black. But weakness in the pork market is expected to maintain a steady to weaker tone in the cash hog market. Ahead of tomorrow's noon CT expiration, December lean hog futures are trading at around a $2.50 discount to the cash index, which opens the door for some short-covering.


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