U.S. hog futures were mixed, recovering slightly from their recent slide to the lowest levels since August on Monday. December hogs fell 17 to 85.42, February Lean hogs were flat with Monday's close at 89.90
U.S. cattle futures ended the trading session Tuesday sharply lower for the second consecutive day amid concerns about sluggish demand for beef. December live-cattle dropped 95 to $130, February Cattle shed 152 to $131
Wheat futures rose for the first time in 12 sessions on speculation that low prices will boost demand for inventories from the U.S. Corn futures gained for the first time in six sessions on speculation that the lowest price in 38 months will spur overseas interest in grain from the U.S. And Soybeans declined on speculation rainfall in Brazil, the world's biggest exporter of the oilseeds, may boost crop conditions. December wheat in Chicago rose 8 to $6.50, December KC wheat gained 4 ½ to $6.98, December Corn rose 5 3/4 to $4.17, and January Soybean fell 11 ¼ to 12.76.
Cotton futures continued to decline on demand worries and a harvest in full swing. December new crop cotton fell 49 to 75.88, and the March contract dropped 15 to 77.56.
Gold futures ended near flat amid low trading volumes Tuesday, as many investors opted to stay on the sidelines ahead of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's speech later Tuesday and the release of Federal Open Market Committee meeting minutes Wednesday. December Gold gained $1.20 to $1,273.50, December silver closed at $20.33, down 2.3 cents.
U.S. crude futures shook off morning doldrums Tuesday to end the day slightly higher, driven by what traders and analysts said was a reversal in the spread between the U.S. and global benchmark oil contracts.
December crude gained 31 cents to $93.34 a barrel, December gasoline dropped a fraction to $2.63 a gallon, and December distillates ended down a fraction as well at $2.90 a gallon.
Natural-gas futures dropped Tuesday as high supplies overshadowed a cold snap forecast for key consumer markets in coming days. December Natural gas fell 4.3 cents to $3.61.
On Wall Street, stocks fell Tuesday, with the Dow and the S&P 500 retreating further from milestone levels, led by a slide in Best Buy after a disappointing outlook. The Dow dropped 9 to 15,967, the Nasdaq closed at 3,931, down 17 and the S&P 500 fell 3 to 1,787.