A South Korean tender seemingly boosted corn futures. The weekly EIA report showing reduced ethanol production and rising stocks undercut corn futures yesterday. However, the drop left the nearby contracts resting above moving average support, so the favorable response to an announced South Korean tender for 322,000 tonnes of optional origin corn wasn’t terribly surprising. March corn futures bounced 2.0 cents to $3.9825/bushel Wednesday night, while July added 1.5 to $4.13.

Soyoil seemed to lead the soy complex higher last night. News of a Pakistani purchase of Brazilian beans and a similar tender for U.S. product seemed to support soybean futures overnight. Strength in the crude and palm oil markets also gave the soyoil market a boost, which seemed to support beans and meal as well, despite ongoing U.S. dollar gains. March soybean futures gained 3.25 cents at $10.595/bushel early Thursday morning, while March soyoil climbed 0.40 to 33.56 cents/pound, and March meal edged up $0.6 to $354.6/ton.

A report of massive Indian wheat stockpiles seemed to depress wheat futures. Arctic conditions are still in place over U.S. winter wheat areas and are probably damaging spring crop prospects. However, the markets are struggling. That may partially reflect the surging value of the U.S. dollar, as well as overnight news that Indian stockpiles have grown to 25 million tonnes (whereas the USDA predicts their ending stocks down to 16.3 million). March CBOT wheat slumped 2.0 cents to $5.775/bushel in predawn Thursday trading, while March KC wheat skidded 0.75 cent to $6.1925/bushel, and March MWE wheat slid 1.5 to $6.1425.

Cattle and feeder futures moved mostly lower Wednesday. Beef packers have reportedly become more aggressive in bidding for cattle due to weather-restricted activity. Strong noon beef prices also seemed supportive of CME futures, but one has to suspect the surging U.S. dollar is reducing export prospects. Conversely, afternoon beef gains seemingly boded well for today’s opening. February live cattle ended Wednesday having slipped 0.12 cents to 165.90 cents/pound, while April futures sagged 0.27 cents to 164.72. January feeder cattle futures surged 0.95 cents to 225.65 cents/pound, whereas March feeders stumbled 0.55 cents to 220.32.

Hog futures turned upward yesterday. Despite persistent reports of spot market weakness early in the new year, CME hog futures rebounded strongly from Wednesday’s opening losses. The bounce probably marked a response to talk of seasonally firming country cash and wholesale quotes. However, cash prices continued sliding on the afternoon reports, which suggests a weak opening again today. February hog futures advanced 0.75 cents to 79.32 cents/pound at Wednesday’s CME close, while June hogs gained 0.40 cents to 90.90.

Financial markets are sending mixed signals to cotton traders. Shifts in the equity indexes are routinely viewed as indicators of future economic growth and demand potential, but a rising U.S. dollar increases the cost of American goods to export customers. Thus, the midweek surge in stocks and the dollar are sending divergent signals about the cotton demand outlook. Bulls seemed to win arguments last night. March cotton futures inched up 0.03 cents to 60.46 cents/pound shortly after sunrise (EST) Thursday, while the July contract rose 0.06 to 61.94.