U.S. livestock futures on Wednesday showed wear from traders' expectations of bigger supplies in the coming weeks and months. July hog futures slipped 35 to 94.75, August hogs shed 62 to close at 92.15
Live-cattle futures faced narrower losses compared with hogs, as traders focused on bigger supplies in coming weeks and months. June live cattle fell10 to close at $116, August feeders fell 85 to close at $152.
U.S. wheat futures ended higher Wednesday, boosted by technical trading and expectations for lower wheat output in key foreign countries.
July Wheat in Chicago rose 14 1/2 to $6.64, Kansas City Board of Trade July wheat rose 16 1/2 to $6.86. Separately, soybeans and deferred corn futures closed higher despite wetter weather forecasts for the Midwest, as traders waited to see if forecasts will change again. Uncertainty about whether the U.S. corn and soy crops will get enough rain to develop normally has boosted futures this week. Regions in the southern and eastern Corn Belt, such as parts of Illinois and Indiana, are facing particularly dry conditions.
July soybeans rose 12 3/4 to $14.46 ½, and July corn ended down 3/4 at $6.11
Cotton futures plunged by 5.5% Wednesday in a sharp turnaround from a nearly week-long rally that sent the fiber to its highest point since late April. July delivery on ICE Futures U.S. was locked by the exchange-permitted daily trading limit of 5 cents lower. The contract settled at 83.17 cents a pound, or 4.8 cents lower. December Cotton fell 172 to 72.71.
Silver futures bounced back into positive territory while gold pared earlier losses Wednesday as investors continued to sift through the Federal Reserve's policy statement. July Silver finished up 2.2 cents at $28.39 an ounce, August Gold fell $7.40 to $1,615.80
U.S. oil futures sank to their lowest level in eight months Wednesday after the government said oil inventories rose to their highest level since 1990, while gasoline demand in the U.S. fell sharply. July crude expired down $2.23 at $81.80 a barrel, July gasoline dropped 5.13 cents to$2.59 a gallon, and July distillates fell 4.77 cents to $2.57 a gallon.
Natural gas futures prices settled lower Wednesday, pausing ahead of a weekly U.S. gas storage report due out later this morning. July natural gas fell 2.8 cents to $2.51
On Wall Street, stocks fell back near session lows in afternoon trading on Wednesday after the Federal Reserve voted to extend a program to stimulate the economy but offered no clues on further easing. The Dow fell 12 to close at 12,824, the Nasdaq closed at 2,930, up a fraction and the S&P 500 fell 2 to finish the day at 1,355.