Limit gains in hog trade the last two trading sessions is bringing the focus on end-of-the-week direction into the complex.
Cattle: Steady Futures: Higher Live Equiv: $150.81 +0.20*
Hogs: $2 Higher Futures: Higher Lean Equiv: $ 80.71 +2.20**
* based on formula estimating live cattle equivalent of gross packer revenue
** based on formula estimating lean hog equivalent of gross packer revenue
Cash cattle trade has once again made it to Friday without any significant indication from either side of how aggressive buyer interest will be, and the expectation that it may be late in the day before any deals are struck. Asking prices continue to hold firm with early-week levels as feeders focus on the stability in beef values, and potential demand support in the next several weeks and months.
But packers are unwilling to ratchet up prices at this point, potentially limiting negotiated trade volume at the end of the week in order to minimize any added spending. Futures trade is expected mixed in light to moderate activity Friday as the continued support in feeder cattle trade based on supply uncertainty through the end of the year is expected to spark limited support through the complex.
The March 1 Cattle on Feed report will be released following the market’s close Friday afternoon, potentially creating some additional pre-report adjustments during the morning.