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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          10/18 11:36

   Cattle Futures Rally At Midday 

   Sharp losses in cattle trade seen early Wednesday have been replaced by 
moderate to strong gains at midday. This support comes as fundamental firmness 
is seen and traders are focusing on establishing support levels following the 
pressure over the last two sessions. Hog futures remain mostly higher based on 
fundamental support. 

By Rick Kment
DTN Analyst


   Strong gains have quickly flooded into nearby cattle and hog futures. This 
has allowed for increased underlying support across the complex, which is 
replacing sharp triple-digit losses that kept cattle markets under pressure for 
most of the morning. Corn prices are lower in light trade. December corn 
futures are 1 cent per bushel lower. Stock markets are higher in light trade. 
The Dow Jones is 149 points higher while Nasdaq is up 6 points.


   Nearby live cattle futures have bounced back from sharp triple-digit losses 
as traders have quickly moved into the complex based on a combination of short 
covering activity as well as mixed beef values allowing traders to try to 
establish support values through the day Wednesday. Nearby contracts are 10 to 
90 cents per cwt higher although the volume moving into the market remains 
relatively light. It is uncertain just how much follow-through support will be 
seen over the coming days, and if traders will be able to keep prices stable 
through the end of the week. Cash cattle activity is starting to become more 
developed with bids seen in all areas through the morning. At this point trade 
is undeveloped in feedlot markets, although light trade developed on the Fed 
Cattle Exchange. Bids are seen at $108 to $110 live basis and $173 dressed 
basis. Firmer bids are seen through the South with bids at $110 per cwt. These 
bids are still lower than last week's price levels, but improving from early 
week offers. Active trade may not be seen until later in the week. The Fed 
Cattle Exchange Auction report today listed a total of 919 head, with 230 
actually sold, 386 head listed as unsold, and 303 head listed as PO (Passed 
Offer). The state by state breakdown looks like this: KS 430 total head, with 
230 head sold at $109.00, 105 head unsold, 95 head listed as PO ($109.00); NE 
151 total head, with 0 head sold, 151 head unsold, and 0 head listed as PO; TX 
338 total head, with 0 head sold, 130 head unsold, and 208 head listed as PO 
($109.00); CO no cattle reported; IA no cattle reported; other states no cattle 
reported. The delivery date/weighted averages breakdown is as listed: 1-9 day 
delivery: 768 head total, 230 head sold, with a weighted average price of 
$109.00; 1-17 day delivery 151 head total, no sales; 10-17 day delivery no 
cattle reported; 17-30 day delivery no cattle reported. Beef cut-outs at midday 
are mixed, $0.48 lower (select) and up $0.23 per cwt (choice) with light 
movement of 91 total loads reported (51 loads of choice cuts, 17 loads of 
select cuts, 7 loads of trimmings, 16 loads of ground beef). 


   Cattle futures have rallied from strong market losses seen through the 
morning. October futures have rallied sharply higher with a 70 cent gains at 
midday. The rest of the complex is stuck in narrow to moderate mixed range with 
very little additional outside market shifts likely to develop over the next 
couple of hours. The strong rally seen midday in live cattle futures has 
sparked renewed support across feeder cattle trade.         


   Lean hog futures remain mixed to mostly higher Wednesday morning as nearby 
contracts continue to focus on short covering activity developing across the 
complex. December lean hog futures have posted an 82 cent per cwt with prices 
moving to $63 per cwt. The narrow pressure in the deferred contracts has 
created some lack of underlying support across the market as traders are 
looking for firm support through the end of the week, but there continues to be 
pressure in outside markets that is causing some uncertainty across the entire 
complex. Cash prices are higher on the National Direct morning cash hog report. 
The weighted average price higher $0.48 at $60.83 per cwt with the range from 
$53.00 to $63.50 on 5,937 head reported sold. Cash prices higher on the 
Iowa/Minnesota Direct morning cash hog report. The weighted average price added 
$0.55 at $61.67 per cwt with the range from $53.00 to $63.50 on 3,277 head 
reported sold. The National Pork Plant Report reported 203 loads selling with 
prices falling $0.84 per cwt. Lean hog index for 10/16 is at $61.00 up $0.76 
with a projected two-day index of $62.21, up $1.21.

   Rick Kment can be reached at 


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