Outside Markets Quieter Overnight

March 7, 2012 12:34 AM

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Overnight highlights. Following are highlights of overnight trade:

Corn: Marginally to 1 cent higher. Futures are favoring a firmer tone overnight as outside markets have calmed down. The U.S. dollar index is weaker this morning after yesterday's strong gains, as investors wait on several economic reports out this morning. Trade officials in China continue to comment on their need for corn imports. The most recent is from the China Grain Reserves Corp., who says the country will continue to import corn this year if its profitable to do so. But it says near-term corn imports are unlikely because global prices are slightly higher than domestic prices.

Soybeans: 1 to 2 cents higher. Futures are firmer in late overnight trade thanks to dollar weakness and bullish fundamentals. Traders are also beginning to more actively even positions ahead of Friday morning's USDA S&D Report, expected to show soybean carryover down around 18 million bu. from last month. New-crop futures widened the spread with new-crop corn yesterday in its bid for acres.

Wheat: Mixed. Futures are choppy this morning in lackluster trade. Weakness in the U.S. dollar index is limiting pressure, although a lack of fresh positive news is limiting buying. Traders expect Friday morning's S&D Report to show carryover down around 7 million Bu from last month, which should also help to limit selling as long as outside markets remain quiet this morning.

Live cattle: Mixed. Futures are expected to be mixed this morning following yesterday's sharp decline. Upside potential will be limited to short-covering however, on signs of a near-term high has been posted. Cash cattle trade picked up at $127 yesterday -- down $3 from the previous week. April live cattle are trading at around a $1 discount to this week's cash trade, which could attract some short-covering.

Lean Hogs: Mixed. Futures are also expected to be mixed following yesterday's sharp losses. April live cattle erased the premium it holds to the cash index -- and a little more. The contract is now trading at around an 80 cent discount to the index. Pork cutout movement picked up yesterday, but values slipped 11 cents to keep packers' profit margins in the red. Demand for cash hogs has softened this week.


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