Grain Markets Choppy Overnight

February 21, 2012 12:38 AM

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Overnight highlights. Following are highlights of overnight trade and opening calls:

Corn: Mixed. Corn was mixed overnight, with 2012 contracts down 4 to 6 cents and deferreds marginally higher. The U.S. dollar index is weaker this morning on news euro-zone ministers agreed to a second bailout for Greece, including $173 billion in new financing. Crude oil and gold futures are also higher this morning, which could help to firm corn this morning.

Soybeans: Mixed. Soybean were mixed overnight, with nearbys mostly around a penny higher and deferreds mixed. Positive outside markets helped to limit pressure on futures. Meanwhile, mostly stressful conditions continued in South America this weekend. High temps and limited rainfall during the next few days will further stress filling soybeans in Rio Grande do Sul and Parana. Also positive for grain markets this morning is news China has eased its monetary policy.

Wheat: 2 to 6 cents lower. Futures were weaker overnight amid a lack of fresh demand news. Traders also say weather conditions in Europe have eased due to milder temps moving in. Wheat needs to improve on last week's price gains to signal a seasonal low has been posted. Key will be if traders view a weaker start as a buying opportunity given positive outside markets this morning.

Live cattle: Steady to firmer. Futures are expected to see a boost from the strong start to the beef market for the week. While futures were closed yesterday, the beef market added to last week's gains to boost cash expectations to start the week. Choice values were $1.36 higher and Select rose $2.48 on solid movement of 181 loads to start the week.

Lean Hogs: Mixed. Futures are expected to be mixed this morning on nervousness about the cash market. Pork cutout values were softer yesterday, which raises questions about packers' demand for cash hogs to start the week. Packers have seen profit margins return to the black, but further pork cutout gains are needed in order to improve cash bids.


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