Funds, Short-Covering Extend CME Live Cattle Gains

Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle futures on Friday closed higher for a third day in a row, led by fund buying and investors who covered previously short positions, said traders.

December led advances after funds in CME's livestock markets that track the Standard & Poor's Goldman Sacks Commodity Index bought that contract and sold, or rolled, out of October futures.

Friday was the first of five days for the "roll" process.

October live cattle finished 1.100 cents per pound higher at 107.325 cents, and above the 20-day moving average of 106.541 cents. December closed 1.725 cents higher at 112.850 cents, and above the 40-day moving average of 112.375 cents.

Futures rose in the face of tepid wholesale beef demand and uncertainty regarding this week's slaughter-ready, or cash, cattle prices.

So far, packers in the U.S. Plains tabled bids of $102 and$105 per cwt for cash cattle priced above $107, said feedlot sources. A week ago, cash cattle fetched $103 to $105.

Some processors need cattle after not purchasing a significant number of them last week, but supplies appear ample and animal weights have increased, which creates more tonnage of meat, a trader said.

He said feedlots are reluctant to sell cattle at lower prices knowing that packers are running plants with extremely profitable margins.

On Friday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) export sales report for the week ended Aug. 31 showed U.S. beef sales at 5,900 tons, the lowest this year.

The decline was due to an adjustment in product reporting by exporters to Egypt, an industry source said.

More live cattle futures advances and technical buying sent CME feeder cattle upward for a third consecutive session.

September closed 2.325 cents per pound higher at 147.875 cents. 

Hog Futures Rebound

Fund buying, bargain hunting and short-covering pared some of CME lean hogs' recent losses, said traders.

October ended up 0.700 cent per pound to 62.150 cents, and December finished 0.625 cent higher at 58.900 cents.

Uneasiness about cash hog prices and wholesale pork demand, amid abundant supplies, pulled futures from morning highs.

"There's no getting around it, there's just too many hogs," said Schwieterman Inc. broker Domenic Varricchio.

USDA estimated this week's hog slaughter at 2.170 million head, 84,000 more than a year ago.

Friday's USDA export report showed U.S. pork sales at 25,700 tons, mostly for Japan, compared to 25,900 the week before.

 

Latest News

Nebraska Feedlot @TLauritsen
Fed Cattle Steady As Futures Hit 11-Month High

Cattle feeders were left on the sidelines as every other cattle/beef market segment saw a price rally. Futures markets set new highs, but cash cattle have not reached $112 for seven months.

18 hours ago
Cargill Dodge City
Cargill Will Temporarily Idle Two Packing Plants

Cargill announced it will temporarily idle two of its protein processing facilities for scheduled maintenance. The idling of the facilities is unrelated to the COVID-19 pandemic.

19 min ago
John Nalivka
Nalivka: Combine Your 'Best' Cost - 'Best' Revenue

Analyzing profit and loss relationships across the production end of both the beef and pork supply chains is key to decisions regardless of where you sit in that supply chain.

21 min ago
Y3 Ranch, Idaho
Merck’s Dr. Angela Baysinger Receives “Feather in Her Cap” Award

Dr. Baysinger was recognized for her significant contribution and achievements to the animal health industry, including mentoring and developing future women leaders.

12 min ago
The JBS plant in Greeley, Co.
JBS Offers $100 to Employees Who Get COVID-19 Vaccine

The bonus is intended to encourage employees to get inoculations, after thousands of U.S. meatpacking workers became infected with the coronavirus last year.

3 hours ago
“Etsy of Meat” Provides New Options for Consumers

When the COVID-19 pandemic struck, a farmer and businessman from southeast Iowa came up with an idea that has now grown into an expanding online marketplace known as ChopLocal.

3 hours ago