DTN Livestock Open: Cash Cattle Trade Remains Illusive

It will be another late week of trade in cash cattle markets as both sides remain locked in their respective positions as they head into the end of the week. Concerns of further futures pressure is holding early Friday.

Cattle: Steady to Higher Futures: Mixed Live Equiv: $139.81 +0.19*
Hogs: Higher Futures: Mixed Lean Equiv: $ 81.05 -1.44**
* based on formula estimating live cattle equivalent of gross packer revenue
** based on formula estimating lean hog equivalent of gross packer revenue

GENERAL COMMENTS:

Another Friday has arrived and packers and feeders find the need to get down to business once again. So far this week, packer bids have been sluggish to say the least with limited interest shown over the last few days. The bids that have been seen have been pretty well established well below asking prices.

Bids in the North developed at $175 per cwt. This is a good $3 to $5 per cwt below asking prices of $178 to $180 per cwt dressed basis in the South and likely to spark some additional uncertainty about the potential to bring strong end-of-the-week cash market support back to the table before both sides call it good for the week.

Asking prices in the South remain at $111 to $112 per cwt, but as bids start developing through the day, they will likely be firmly below these levels. Futures trade is expected mixed with limited expectations of renewed support this late in the week. Feeder cattle futures have led the market correction lower Thursday as air had started to become thin above $145 per cwt.

Although the case for continued firm longer-term market support remains, the cattle complex has been ripe for a market correction over the last couple of weeks. It is uncertain at this point if Thursday’s action will be enough to satisfy sellers in order to spark renewed interest through either live cattle or feeder cattle trade at the end of the week. Friday slaughter runs are expected at 112,000 head.

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