U.S. lean-hog futures rallied despite increasing supplies and pressure from the cash market. The futures market's steep discount to cash prices is underpinning futures, analysts said. Lean-hogs for October ended up 127 to 87.32, December lean-hogs closed up 115 to 84.30.
U.S. live-cattle futures ended slightly higher amid tightening supplies as trader awaited direction from the cash-market ahead of a three-day holiday weekend. August live-cattle futures ended up 25 to $123, while October live-cattle climbed 5 to $127.
U.S. soybean futures settled narrowly lower Thursday, pressured by some profit-taking after a sharp run-up over the past week has taken many contracts to their highest levels in a month. Corn futures, meanwhile, ended the trading day mixed, declining in the spot contract as producers in the southern U.S. have begun to ship their harvested grain to satisfy near-term demand throughout the rest of the country. Wheat futures declined.
September corn slid 7 to $4.97, September soybeans declined 3 to $14.30, September wheat in Chicago fell 5 1/4 to $6.41, and September KC wheat let go of 4 ½ to close at $7.01
Cotton futures fell to a near 10-week low Thursday as speculative investors liquidated bets that prices would rise, overwhelming buying interest in the market. December cotton ended 51 lower at 83.24, and near month October fell 41 to 83.60.
Gold futures continued to retreat from three-month highs on Thursday as stronger U.S. growth data bolstered expectations that the Federal Reserve would begin to curtail its stimulus program. December gold fell $5.90 to $1,412.90, December silver closed at $24.14, down 29.90 cents.
Crude futures finished lower Thursday as the oil market awaited signs of definitive military action by Western allies against Syria, while traders booked profits from the steep rally in oil prices the previous two days.
October crude fell $1.30 lower cents to $108.80 a barrel, September gasoline fell 2.81 cents to $3.06 a gallon, and September distillates fell 2.34 cents to$3.18 a gallon.
Natural-gas futures finished higher Thursday, wiping out a steep midday loss, as traders shrugged off a rise in natural-gas stockpiles and focused on hot temperatures expected over the coming days. October Natural gas gained 3.6 cents to $3.61.
On Wall Street, stocks edged higher on Thursday as data pointed to stronger-than-expected economic growth, though geopolitical uncertainty over Syria limited gains. The Dow gained 16 to 14,840, the Nasdaq closed at 3,520, up 27, and the S&P 500 gained 3 to 1,638.