Corn futures closed sharply higher on Wednesday. The market was supported by worries that hot and dry weather in the Corn Belt next week could trim yields in some areas as the crop is pollinating. Forecasts show hot and dry weather this weekend extending into most of next week. Strength in the stock market and crude oil and weakness in the dollar were also supportive factors. September ended 22 3/4 cents higher at $6.86 3/4 and December was 21 3/4 cents higher at $6.79 3/4.
Soybean futures traded solidly higher on Wednesday. Spillover strength in corn and traders adding weather premium into the soybean market were supportive factors. While August is the critical time for soybean reproduction, forecasts for hot and dry weather next week in the Midwest could trim some yield potential. Strength in the stock market and crude oil and weakness in the dollar were also bullish factors. August closed 19 1/4 cents higher at $13.74 3/4 and November was 21 1/2 cents higher at $13.79 3/4.
Wheat futures were sharply higher on Wednesday. A broad-based commodity buying spree led to gains in the wheat markets. Weakness in the dollar is a positive factor U.S. wheat exports. Strength in corn also helped push prices higher as SRW wheat is seen as a substitute for corn in feed rations. CBOT September closed 42 1/2 cents higher at $7.14 1/2, KCBT September was 29 cents higher at $7.62 and MGE Sep ended 27 3/4 cents higher at $8.20 3/4.
Cattle futures closed mixed on Wednesday. Futures were supported much of the session by recent strength in beef prices, outside market support and rising corn prices. The stock market was strongly higher today while the dollar index was lower. Beef exports continue to run at a record pace and through the end of May beef exports are up 27% compared to last year. However, profit-taking developed to push most months lower. August ended 53 cents lower at $113.50 while October was 5 cents higher at $120.00.
Lean hog futures closed higher on Wednesday. Strength in the cash market and continued talk of increased export sales of pork to China supported prices. Reports on Tuesday indicated that China has purchased or will buy about 130 million pounds of U.S. pork from August through October. Rising corn prices were also a bullish factor for the futures market. August ended $1.03 higher at $98.95 and October was 65 cents higher at $92.85.