DTN Livestock Midday: Steady Gains Into the Weekend

Cattle feeding. Photo: ©Debra L Ferguson

Steady Gains Heading Into Friday Afternoon for Livestock Contracts

Heading into the final stretch before the weekend, livestock contracts are looking like a stronger close may be attainable for all three sectors.

General Comments

Steady, manageable gains seem to be the trend in the livestock complex heading into the afternoon which could lead the day to close fully higher throughout all three livestock contracts. The cash markets are extremely quiet as packers are having submission problems with the cash hog prices, and for the cash cattle market some packers have inquired on cattle, but the day remains mostly quiet. December corn is up 1/4 cent per bushel and December soybean meal is down $0.90. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is down 201.65 points and NASDAQ is up 25.73 points.

LIVE CATTLE

Live cattle contracts are happily heading into Friday afternoon trade without much worry as the complex is taking these easy $0.20 to $0.60 gains with ease. August live cattle are up $0.42 at $102.15, October live cattle are up $0.52 at $107.27 and December live cattle are up $0.52 at $110.97. The cash cattle market has been mostly quiet Friday morning with packers inquiring on a few cattle here and there but without much urgency to get anything bought. Nebraska sold some cattle Friday morning live for $100, steady with the week’s trend, and packers have bids on cattle in Colorado for $98.

Boxed beef prices are mixed: choice up $1.58 ($203.38) and select down $0.44 ($191.06) with a movement of 55 loads (37.43 loads of choice, 7.60 loads of select, 5.94 loads of trim and 3.75 loads of ground beef).

FEEDER CATTLE

Feeder cattle contracts have spent most of the week rebuilding to the $143.85 level that Monday quickly dropped lower from. Seeing that the market is rallying $0.55 to $1.00 stronger (with deferred contracts being most boisterous) the nearby contracts could very well keep with their modest progression but leave the hard decisions up to next week. At some point the market will either solidify that the $143.80 to $144.00 range is an extremely strong resistance plane that support can’t seem to trade through, or adversely, because of the countryside’s robust strength the market will end its sideways trade and head higher. August feeders are up $0.60 at $143.62, September feeders are up $0.70 at $145.12 and October feeders are up $0.92 at $145.45.

LEAN HOGS

Friday’s trade as been more favorable to the lean hog complex as contracts trade steadily $0.02 to $0.72 stronger into the afternoon. August lean hogs are up $0.17 at $51.60, October lean hogs are up $0.72 at $49.05 and December lean hogs are up $0.27 at $50.05. It’s looking like packers wont’ be swooping in to boost the cash trade or to buy upwards of 10,000 hogs through Friday, but Friday’s modest rally comes as a pleasant surprise nonetheless.

The projected lean hog index for 7/30/2020 is down $0.03 at $53.53, and the actual index for 7/29/2020 is up $0.60 at $53.56. Hog prices are lower on the National Direct Morning Hog Report, down $0.02 with a weighted average of $41.37, ranging from $40.00 to $41.80 on 3,829 head and five-day rolling average of $41.87. Pork cutouts total 252.82 loads with 225.41 loads of pork cuts and 27.41 loads of trim. Pork cutout values: up $1.00, $68.57.

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