Corn traders were reportedly encouraged by demand strength Wednesday. The grain and soy markets rose moderately today, with wheat leading in the morning on concerns about dryness in the southern Plains. Corn and soy are probably enjoying spillover support, but wire service sources also cited talk of demand strength for firmness in those markets. The surging dollar apparently did little damage. May corn futures closed up 3.0 cents at $3.91/bushel Wednesday, while December added 2.5 to $4.1475.

Brazilian news reportedly boosted the soy complex. Little fresh news concerning the soybean and product markets emerged overnight, although Asian palm strength rather clearly gave the soyoil market a boost. Having the U.S. dollar surge to a fresh 12-year high may have taken an early toll on prices, whereas wire service sources argued that afternoon gains reflected renewed industry concerns about South American production, particularly after Brazil’s CONAB cut its domestic bean estimate yesterday. May soybean futures advanced 8.25 cents to $9.9275/bushel as Wednesday’s CBOT session ended, while May soyoil lifted 0.14 cents to 31.10 cents/pound, and May meal edged $2.3 higher to $333.3/ton.

Talk of southern Plains dryness apparently powered wheat gains. Ideas that winter wheat in the U.S. southern Plains is starting to grow in relatively dry conditions seemed to boost the Chicago and KC markets Tuesday night. The fact that Minneapolis lagged largely confirmed the industry’s focus on the winter wheat situation. Traders didn’t seem to react to talk that Russia will export much more wheat this year than previously thought. May CBOT wheat rallied 5.75 cents to $4.99/bushel in late Wednesday action, while May KC wheat gained 4.75 cents to $5.4075/bushel, and May MWE wheat rose 2.25 to $5.67.

Short-term pessimism continued weighing on CME hogs Wednesday. In contrast to the bullishness now seen in nearby cattle futures, hog traders are clearly pessimistic about short-term hog and pork prospects. The downtrend seems likely to continue until consistently supportive spot market news begins emerging. April hog futures tumbled 1.85 cents to 64.12 cents/pound as Wednesday’s pit session ended, while June hogs plunged 2.47 to 76.20.

Short-term pessimism continued weighing on CME hogs Wednesday. In contrast to the bullishness now seen in nearby cattle futures, hog traders are clearly pessimistic about short-term hog and pork prospects. The downtrend seems likely to continue until consistently supportive spot market news begins emerging. April hog futures tumbled 1.85 cents to 64.12 cents/pound as Wednesday’s pit session ended, while June hogs plunged 2.47 to 76.20.

Cotton futures continued their recent slide. Tuesday’s WASDE report increased the USDA’s global carry-out forecast for cotton, with a rise in Chinese inventories accounting for that shift. The negative reaction to that news extended recent losses, which persisted Wednesday. This reaction suggests the cotton industry is not optimistic about prospective Chinese buying later this year. May cotton slumped 0.54 cents to 60.33 cents/pound at Wednesday’s ICE settlement, while December futures dipped 0.39 to 62.39.