Hog futures benefited from buying across the meat complex, and also from continued expectations for a supply pinch in the months ahead due to death loss from a swine disease. Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus, or PEDV, is known to have killed many litters of young pigs across the country, but market watchers remain in the dark as to the number of hogs impacted. December hogs added 17 to 85.80, February hogs rose 7 to 90.47.
U.S. cattle futures extended their rally to a second consecutive day, buoyed by climbing values for wholesale-beef and a jump in the prices packers have paid for cattle in the cash markets this week. December live-cattle advanced 115 to $133, February Cattle rose 107 to $134.
Wheat rose on signs of strong demand for global supplies, which may boost exports from the U.S., the world's largest shipper of the grain. Corn and soybean prices fell. December Wheat in Chicago rose 4 3/4 to $6.51, December KC wheat gained 8 ¾ to $7.13, December Corn fell 1 1/4 to $4.17, and January Soybean fell 9 1/4 to $13.20.
Cotton futures slipped on Wednesday after a storm moved out of U.S. cotton-growing areas and traders took profits from the recent weather-driven rally. March Cotton dropped 70 to 78.44, and the May contract fell 64 to 78.95.
Gold futures settled lower on Wednesday, giving up earlier gains as a firmer dollar and proximity to the Thanksgiving holiday in the U.S. prompted some investors to reduce their holdings. February gold fell $3.60 to $1,237.90, March silver closed at $19.68, down 3.6 cents.
Oil futures tumbled to a near six-month low after weekly government data showed that U.S. crude production is at its highest level in decades.
January crude fell $1.38 to $92.30 a barrel, January gasoline gained 1.14 to $2.69 a gallon, January distillates gained a fraction to $3.0469 a gallon.
Natural gas futures settled at a five-month high on Wednesday as traders bet on increasing demand for the heating fuel ahead of projected colder temperatures in the heart of the winter season. January Natural gas rose 3.1 cents to $3.89.
On Wall Street, the Dow and the S&P 500 closed at record highs on Wednesday, led by Hewlett-Packard's jump a day after the personal computer maker's earnings, while the Nasdaq finished at a 13-year high. The Dow gained 24 to close at 16,097, the Nasdaq closed at 4,044, up 27, and the S&P 500 gained 4 to finish at 1,807.