The cattle complex closed sharply higher Friday, supported by aggressive short-covering, technical-buying and expected cash premiums. On the other hand, lean hogs settled narrowly mixed in light trade volume.
Besides a few odds and ends in parts of the North, the cash cattle trade was strangely quiet Friday. Trade volume totals as of this writing were very small. Clearly, buyers and sellers vigorously disagree over the question of cattle value with bids and asking prices separated by as much as $6 to $7. We suppose it is still possible that some business could surface later Friday afternoon. The National hog base closed up $1.20 compared with the Prior Day settlement ($76 to $84, weighted average $82.87).
From Friday to Friday, livestock futures scored the following changes: Jun LC off $1.57; Aug LC off $1.00; Aug FC up $0.70; Sep FC off $0.15; Jul LH up $1.00; Aug LH up $1.13.
Corn futures closed several cents lower, pressured by favorable growing conditions and spillover selling from sharply lower action in soybeans. Pressured by news of greater tariffs imposed on Chinese imports, as well as the threat of a growing trade war, the stock market struggled through most of the trading session. However, final settlements were just moderately lower with the Dow 84 points and the Nasdaq down 14.