Not all the economic news coming from the US is negative for risk assets.
White House confirmation overnight of Janet Yellen as its nomination to succeed Ben Bernanke as chairman of the Federal Reserve helped Asian share markets steer into positive territory, where their Western peers struggled to tread in the last session.
Ms Yellen is seen as a "dovish" candidate, likely to continue the Fed's aggressive monetary easing policies.
Tokyo shares closed up 1.0%, contrasting with Tuesday's 1.1% loss on Wall Street's Dow Jones Industrial Average, on concerns that the US budget deadlock could escalate into a debt default.
But the positive sentiment had difficulty carrying across to grain and oilseeds.
In part, that was thanks to dollar strength, with the greenback adding 0.4% against a basket of currencies, a gain attributed to the Yellen effect.
A stronger dollar undermines prices of dollar-denominated commodities by making them less affordable to buyers in other currencies.
However, there was also a feeling that investors were unwilling to take too many risks, given the US Department of Agriculture data blackout prompted by Washington's partial shutdown, triggered by the budget impasse.
"Row crop traders lack strong directional conviction," Richard Feltes at broker RJ O'Brien said, highlighting the influence of the postponement of the USDA's benchmark monthly Wasde crop report, which had been due on Friday, and the absence of export sales data.
Investors are also feeling the loss particularly of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission's weekly reports on investor positioning in commodities.
"Traders are operating blindfolded," Mr Feltes said.
'Wheels should be flying'
In fact there was some directional trend on Wednesday for grains and oilseeds, downwards, although it was not strong, and suffered worst by soybeans, which dropped 0.1% to $12.87 ½ a bushel in Chicago for November delivery as of 08:25 UK time (02:25 Chicago time).
The oilseed is feeling the pressure from a turn better in the weather both for the US harvest, with dryness allowing combines to roll, and for sowings in South America, where improved rainfall is improving soil moisture, encouraging farmers to plant.
"Weather is favourable for the soybean harvest into the weekend, with temperatures above normal and rains not in the forecast until Friday," Benson Quinn Commodities said.
CHS Hedging said: "Growers are back in the field combining both corn and beans. The wheels should be flying across the fields the rest of the week."
November soybeans face a bit of a technical battle at current levels, being pretty much at the level of both 75-day and 100-day moving averages.
The resumption in earnest of harvesting was a negative for corn prices too.
But they failed to follow soybeans, for a few reasons.
One was that farmers appear to be prioritising soybeans over corn in their harvesting plans, a reflection in part of price reasons.
RJ O'Brien's Mr Feltes said that Chicago futures are "sending a strong message for producers to hold corn", with near-term lots trading below further-away lots, "and to sell soybeans", with short-term contracts at a premium.
"I hear more reports of livestock producers, ethanol plants and soy crushers still straining to source new crop from farmers wholly unsatisfied with the corn price and only reluctantly willing to sell soybeans," he added.
And then there is some evidence of demand.
An unnamed Chinese trading firm was revealed overnight to have bought 420,000 tonnes of US corn for 2014 delivery at $205 a tonne, FOB, to exploit relatively cheap prices, saying the grain was "very cheap compared with domestic corn".
It is in fact physical prices at the port of Dalian stood at 2,360 yuan a tonne, equivalent to $386 a tonne, while futures there stood in late deals up 0.3% at 2,328 yuan ($380) a tonne.
Furthermore, in a sign of the improved US ethanol margins, Three Rivers Energy revealed that it will next week restart a central Ohio plant that has been mothballed for nearly five years.
Chicago corn for December added 0.2% to $4.42 ¾ a bushel.
'Tendency to go stale'
That was actually enough to reduce some of its unusually high discount to wheat, which for December stood flat at $6.93 ½ a bushel, as some of the bullish news which has been boosting prices, such as the dismal former Soviet Union planting conditions, began to lose potency.
"It remains a talking point, but the market has likely gotten all it can get out concerns about late planting in the Black Sea region," Benson Quinn Commodities said.
"Stories of this nature merit attention, but have a tendency to go stale over time.
Besides, "the weather pattern over much of this region for this week looks favourable for the advancement of winter grain planting".
'Likely trimmed yield potentials'
Furthermore, Canada delivered a double whammy, the first talk that Brazilian import demand, which had been seen concentrated on the US, spreading further north.
The second was the idea that part of Canada's record wheat crop is making its way into the US too, which would not be a surprise given the logistical problems Canada faces getting all its huge crops onto maritime trading routes.
Still, talk was not all bearish, with ideas that China has set at just under 10m tonnes its tariff rate quota for wheat imports, making the USDA's estimate of 9.5m tonnes in Chinese imports in 2013-14 appear all the more realistic.
Furthermore, weather remains less than ideal in Australia, with harvest not far away.
"Recent dry weather across the eastern states has likely trimmed yield potentials, as has the recent string of cold overnight temperatures throughout much of New South Wales," Luke Mathews at Commonwealth Bank of Australia said.
"Hot temperatures are forecast today and the Bureau of Meteorology eight-day forecast offers virtually no rainfall for the majority of the east coast grain belt."
Among soft commodities, cotton made a few early gains, adding 0.2% to 83.83 cents a pound, taking a particular lead, as an industrial commodity, from US economic cues.
"The tone in the cotton market is likely to remain heavily influenced by the US government budget stalemate," Mr Mathews said.
However, the fibre remains well down for the week, after a tumble on Monday when tropical storm Karen failed, as many investors had expected, to wreak much damage among south eastern US cotton fields.
"Cotton prices had risen 6% in response to the threat of bad weather and delayed development of cotton plants over the past month, but have now lost more than half of this," Commerzbank said.
'Sway in market sentiment'
Elsewhere, in Kuala Lumpur, palm oil added 0.6% to 2,364 ringgit a tonne, ahead of data due on Thursday on Malaysian production, exports and stocks, with an idea that the statistics may prove less bearish than had initially been feared.
"The gain is sustained by a sway in market sentiment, as a market survey showed palm stocks and output for Malaysia may be lower than expectations," Phillip Futures said.