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Overnight highlights. Following are opening grain and livestock calls at 6:15 a.m. CT:
Corn: 1 to 3 cents higher. Futures are enjoying light short-covering and help from positive outside markets (after the dollar was stronger yesterday) and spillover from soybeans. Otherwise, there isn't any fresh news for the corn market to digest. Corn futures continue in its sideways trading range, although hovering closer to support.
Soybeans: 17 to 21 cents higher. Futures pushed sharply higher overnight after yesterday's solid price performance in the nearby contracts. Soybeans are being lifted by expectations China is back buying U.S. beans to extend the export window a bit longer than usual at this time of year. Technicals are also positive, as May futures have posted a fresh monthly high this morning and are working on sharp weekly gains.
Wheat: 1 to 4 cents higher. Futures are enjoying short-covering this morning following yesterday's sharp losses that did technical chart damage. Wheat has a long ways to go in order to improve the technical posture of the market and need constant export news to encourage buying. Wheat received some fresh demand news this week, but it wasn't enough to lift bulls' spirits.
Live cattle: Mixed. Futures are expected to be choppy to end out the week as futures have done some technical chart damage this week and attitudes are bearish. Traders are keeping a close eye on the boxed beef market for signs of a turnaround in demand. Stabilization today should also come from traders evening positions ahead of this afternoon's Cattle on Feed Report -- reminding traders of the tightening supply situation.
Lean hogs: Mixed. Futures are deteriorated this week due to concerns about export demand -- as well as domestic demand. This afternoon's Cold Storage Report will provide some clues about demand, although traders are more concerned about the possible meat inspector furlough and demands being placed by China and Russia for ractopamine-free pork. The cash hog market is called steady to lower today.