DTN Livestock Midday: Mixed Trade Limits Trader Interest

Prices have shifted from early gains in cattle markets as mixed market activity through the livestock complex has eroded trade volume. Traders seem to be focusing on establishing some market stability, allowing for positioning opportunities at midday.


Mixed trade is seen across the complex. This may add to buyer activity in the last hour of trade, but for now, traders seem comfortable in most markets holding onto narrow to moderate price shifts. It appears that traders are looking for increased market stability through the end of the session.

Corn prices are lower in light trade. May corn futures are 2 cents lower. Stock markets are higher in light trade. The Dow Jones is 200 points higher while Nasdaq is up 116 points.


Mixed trade is seen through live cattle futures Tuesday morning. The inability to hold triple digit gains that quickly developed across the complex has added to the market uncertainty as nearby futures remain higher. But the pressure in deferred contracts is offsetting any market support.

This may limit any directional shifts seen in cattle trade through the day as traders continue to focus on the balance between supply issues and spring and summer demand that has had a hard time developing due to the cold weather patterns.

Cash cattle markets are generally quiet with overall bids and asking prices poorly defined. There have been a few bids developing in the north at $190 dressed basis, but this is not enough to spark any active interest into the market at this point. It is likely to be midweek or later before trade will develop, and potentially the end of the week.

Boxed Beef cut-outs at midday are higher, $0.09 higher (select) and up $0.56 per cwt (choice) with light movement of 71 total loads reported (36 loads of choice cuts, 19 loads of select cuts, 8 loads of trimmings, 8 loads of ground beef).


Strong early support seen in feeder cattle and live cattle markets through the first couple hours of trade have quickly eroded. This may bring additional longer-term pressure back to the market with feeder cattle futures holding losses near $1 per cwt in nearby contracts.

Following the strong bounce higher in the last two weeks, prices seem to be trying to build a sense of stability across the complex. This could add to commercial interest moving back into the market later in the week.


Light gains continue to be seen through the lean hog futures trade. This may add some additional late day support back to the market, but limited interest or trade volume has developed through the morning which may keep prices hovering near stable levels.

Cash prices are higher on the National Direct morning cash hog report. The weighted average price is up 0.86 at $51.63 per cwt with the range from $45.00 to $53.50 on 4,837 head reported sold.

Cash prices are higher on the Iowa/Minnesota Direct morning cash hog report. The weighted average price is up 1.26 at $52.84 per cwt with the range from $48.00 to $53.50 on 1,965 head reported sold.

The National Pork Plant Report posted 210 loads selling with carcass values gaining $0.15 per cwt. Lean hog index for 4/13 is at $53.53 up 0.30 with a projected two-day index of $54.02, up 0.49.

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