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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          07/18 12:04

   Active Buying Moves Into Cattle Futures      

   Sharp buyer support has quickly developed early Wednesday morning. This has 
helped to bring about even more buyer support through the entire cattle 
complex. Lean hog trade remains under light to moderate pressure, following the 
recent trend lower.

By Rick Kment
DTN Analyst

GENERAL COMMENTS: 

   Strong market support is seen across all cattle trade with nearby contracts 
holding $2 per cwt gains in live cattle futures and spot feeder cattle futures 
trading over $3 per cwt higher. The overall support in the complex is becoming 
well-rooted, with prices moving to summer highs. Corn prices are higher in 
light trade Tuesday. July corn futures are 3/4 cent higher. Stock markets are 
higher in light trade. The Dow Jones is 81 points higher while Nasdaq is up 2 
points.

   LIVE CATTLE:

   Live cattle futures have aggressively moved back into the complex with 
August futures surging $2.20 per cwt higher and moving prices to $108.62 per 
cwt at midday. This has moved through short term resistance levels, with prices 
in the August contract trading at the highest levels since March. There is 
growing support that overall supply levels may continue to be tight through the 
fall and winter months, given the current and expected demand for beef 
projected by many market watchers. Cash cattle bids have started to develop 
through the morning, but bids are still well below asking prices. Given the 
support in futures trade, it is unlikely that feedlot managers will pull the 
trigger quickly without some movement from packers. Bids are seen at $107 to 
$108 live and $172 to $173 dressed. This is well below asking prices that are 
holding at $114 and higher live and $180 to $183 dressed. It may easily be 
Friday before active sales are reported. The Fed Cattle Exchange Auction today 
listed a total of 428 head all for Kansas, with 142 actually sold at $112.00, 
109 head were marked as unsold, and 177 head marked as PO (Passed Offer of 
$111.00) All cattle listed were set for a 1-9 day delivery. Boxed Beef cut-outs 
at midday are higher, $0.28 Higher (select) and up $0.26 per cwt (choice) with 
light movement of 89 total loads reported (57 loads of choice cuts, 15 loads of 
select cuts, 4 loads of trimmings, 14 loads of ground beef). 

   FEEDER CATTLE:

   Sharp triple-digit gains have flooded into feeder cattle trade. This is 
moving additional buyer support back into the complex, with traders looking for 
the ability to add increased market support to the entire complex. August 
futures are leading the complex higher with a $3.17 per cwt rally. The ability 
to move live cattle futures above $108 per cwt in front-month futures is 
helping to solidify buyer interest which just a week ago seemed to be uncertain 
about stepping back into the complex. 

   LEAN HOGS:

   Limited pressure is seen in lean hog futures trade Wednesday. But the 
overall weaker tone in the market continues to hold with nearby contracts 
setting new contract lows and giving every indication that buyer support may be 
hard to find in the near future. August futures have eroded 30 cents per cwt, 
moving to $67.90 per cwt as traders focus on current supply levels and the 
uncertainty of demand growth for both short- and long-term market activity. 
Cash prices are lower on the National Direct morning cash hog report. The 
weighted average price is down $1.39 at $70.59 per cwt with the range from 
$70.00 to $73.00 on 5,376 head reported sold. Cash prices are lower on the 
Iowa/Minnesota Direct morning cash hog report. The weighted average price is 
down $1.09 at $70.97 per cwt with the range from $70.00 to $73.00 on 2,639 head 
reported sold. The National Pork Plant Report posted 226 loads selling with 
carcass values falling $1.74 per cwt. Lean hog index for 7/16 is at $79.69 down 
0.65 with a projected two-day index of $79.15, down 0.54.

   Rick Kment can be reached at rick.kment@dtn.com 


(SK)

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