U.S. lean hog futures Wednesday closed lower with most-active December at a seven-month low on declines in wholesale pork prices and strong near-term hog supplies. December lean hogs closed down 82 at 67.85, Feb closed at 73.55 down 105.
Live cattle futures at the Merc ended mostly lower Wednesday as expectations for declines in cash prices and general weakness across U.S. markets pressured most contracts, Feeder cattle futures closed mostly lower after corn prices rallied from a lower opening to higher later in the day. October live cattle dropped 35 to 100.50, October feeders finished at 111.27, down 2.
US wheat futures finish higher for fourth consecutive day, reaching a 1 1/2-week high as concerns mount about dryness threatening recently planted crop. Dec wheat in Chicago closed up 10 3/4 at $7.02, Dec wheat in KC soared 15 1/2 to $7.54, and MGE Dec wheat jumped 12 1/2 to $7.58
U.S. corn futures ended higher Wednesday, rebounding from an early session setback on spillover support from wheat. Dec corn ended up 6 1/4 at $5.77.
U.S. soybean futures climbed Wednesday, shrugging off weakness from outside financial markets on strong underlying export demand and spillover support from wheat futures, Soy product futures ended higher, rising in unison with soybeans. Jan soybeans gained 5 to $12.36, Dec soy oil gained 7 to 49.60 and Dec soy meal ended up $0.40 at $335.90.
Cotton futures lost their maximum allowable amount Wednesday, pulling back from historic highs on end-of-the-month profit-taking. December cotton plunged 6 to $1.23.
Gold futures fell Wednesday as the dollar strengthened amid dimmed expectations for a Federal Reserve monetary stimulus. December gold fell $16 to $1,322.60 an ounce, Dec silver closed at $23.40, down 42.6 cents.
Crude futures settled lower Wednesday as a stronger dollar weighed on prices, but an unexpected drop in weekly gasoline inventories helped prevent a larger decline.
December crude dropped 61 cents to $81.94 a barrel, November gasoline gained a fraction to $2.10 a gallon, and November distillates fell 1.17 cents to $2.23 a gallon.
Apparently, size does matter. Wall Street’s QE2 rally hit a bit of turbulence as the Dow dropped more than 100 points before recovering amid concerns that the Fed’s plan to boost the economic recovery may not be large enough. The Dow lost 43 to close at 11,126, the Nasdaq gained almost 6 to finish at 2,503, and the S&P 500 fell 3 to finish at 1,182.