Buy orders that were sparked above the market helped Chicago Mercantile Exchange hogs fend off opening lows Wednesday, Pork bellies ended flat to firm after traders who were short the market Tuesday took profits. April hogs ended up 92 at 69.20, March feeders closed up 17 at 83.77.
Live cattle at the Merc ended mixed as traders marked time by implementing spreads while they waited for cash cattle price news, Feeder cattle finished higher on Chicago Board of Trade corn's slide. February live cattle closed up 35 at 90.82, March feeder cattle gained 45 to 101.57.
Profit-taking and a firm U.S. dollar weighed on U.S. wheat futures Wednesday as the markets corrected from Tuesday's rally.
March wheat in Chicago ended down 10 1/4 at $4.94, March wheat in KC sank 10 1/2 to $5.02 and Minneapolis Grain Exchange March wheat dropped 9 1/2 to $5.11.
Corn futures on the Chicago Board of Trade ended lower Wednesday, backpedaling on profit taking pressure in the absence of fresh supportive news. March corn ended down 7 1/4 at $3.60.
CBOT soybean futures ended lower, posting double-digit losses on a correction from recent gains, soy product futures settled lower, retreating with soybeans from prior gains on a mild corrective setback. March soybeans ended down 14 at $9.51, March soy meal fell $4.50 to $279.40, March soy oil slid 20 to 38.75.
ICE cotton posted losses for the first time in seven sessions as the market consolidated amid generally weaker commodities prices, analysts say. May cotton slid 15 to 76.11.
Gold futures ended fractionally higher Wednesday as investors held recent gains without placing new bets for prices to rise, even amid news indicating that investor demand for the metal remains robust. February gold gained 20 cents to $1,119.50 an ounce, March silver lost 5 cents to $16.098 an ounce.
Crude oil futures rose slightly Wednesday, lifted to a three-week high by data showing a strong performance from the U.S. housing and industrial sectors last month. March crude gained 32 cents to $77.33 a barrel, March gasoline gained 1.89 cents to $2.00 a gallon, and March heating oil gained 1.04 cents to $2.00 a gallon.
Natural gas futures settled higher Wednesday on expectations that government data will show a larger-than-average withdrawal from U.S. storage last week. March Natural gas gained 7.6 cents to $5.38.
The bulls continued their advance Wednesday as stocks cheered rising investor confidence overseas and strong earnings results from heavy equipment maker Deere & Co. the Dow closed up 40 at 10,309, the Nasdaq closed at 2,226, up 12 and the S&P 500 finished the day at 1,099, up 4 2/3.