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Overnight highlights. Following are opening grain and livestock calls at 6:45 a.m. CT:
Corn: 2 to 4 cents lower. Futures are softer again this morning despite a slightly more positive tone in the outside markets. March corn is pivoting around the psychologically important $7.00 level this morning, but is well off its earlier lows. Without fresh demand news, there is more near-term downside risk as traders search for the February low, which typically happens around mid-month.
Soybeans: 4 to 7 cents higher. Soybean are enjoying short-covering this morning, which futures trading near session highs on help from a weaker dollar and ideas recent losses were overdone. Meanwhile, upside potential is being limited to corrective buying as traders don't anticipate any fresh demand news from China this week due to its lunar holiday.
Wheat: 1 to 2 cents lower. Wheat is tracking corn futures lower, with pressure limited by ideas the downside may be overdone. However, without fresh demand news, traders continue to talk about U.S. wheat not being competitive on the global market. March Chicago wheat is hovering just above the January low, which if violated, could trigger sell stops.
Live cattle: Mixed. Following yesterday's mostly firmer close, live cattle are called mixed as traders wait on direction from the cash market. The boxed beef market started the week mixed, with Choice values up 60 cents and Select down 47 cents on solid movement of 137 loads. This week's showlist is tighter than last week, which gives feedlots more bargaining power.
Lean hogs: Mixed. Futures are expected to be mixed, with pressure on nearbys limited by the discount those contracts hold to the cash index. February lean hog futures expire on Thursday and still hold a discount to the cash index. Pork cutout values were 52 cents weaker yesterday, but packers' profit margins improved due to the mostly softer tone of the cash market yesterday. Packer margins remain in the red, which is expected to lead to steady to $1 lower cash bids again today.