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Overnight highlights. Following are opening grain and livestock calls at 6:50 a.m. CT:
Corn: Marginally to 1 cent lower. Following yesterday's gains corn is favoring a weaker tone but hasn't seen much net price change in overnight trade. Given the lack of fresh news, traders are beginning to turn more of their focus to evening positions ahead of Friday's USDA reports. traders look for USDA to raise 2012-13 corn carryover by around 17 million bu. from last month to a still-tight 649 million bushels.
Soybeans: Mixed. March soybeans ar down 5 cents, with May through August marginally to a penny higher and deferreds 1 to 6 cents lower. March is seeing some profit-taking as its in the delivery process, while the other old-crop contracts react to shipping delays in Brazil that are keeping demand for U.S. soybeans stronger than expected during this period. Traders look for USDA to trim carryover by around 3 million bu. in Friday's USDA report to a tight 122 million bushels.
Wheat: 1 to 3 cents lower. Wheat remains in a follower's role and is seeing spillover from corn futures. May Chicago wheat is trading at around a 5-cent discount to May corn futures as the market searches for demand. Buying enthusiasm is also being limited by expectations USDA will raise carryover from last month by around 22 million bu. to 713 million bushels.
Live cattle: Mixed. Futures are called mixed on the possibility of short-covering following yesterday's losses, as well as continued strength in the boxed beef market. But while beef prices are surging, movement has slowed and that raises concerns about demand. Choice values rose $2.91 yesterday and Select was up $3.44, but only 159 loads changed hands. Traders are still waiting on packers to release initial bids, but general expectations are for $1 to $2 higher trade with last week's $128 to $129 trade.
Lean hogs: Steady to weaker. Futures are expected to be weaker again today on concerns about pork demand. Pork cutout values slipped $1.79 yesterday, but movement improved to 124.08 loads. Lean hog futures are severely oversold and due for a corrective bounce, but attitudes remain bearish and the cash market is called steady to $1 lower as packers work to keep profit margins in the black.