CME live cattle futures move higher; hogs lower

May 7 (Reuters) – Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle futures moved upward on Wednesday, with support from their discounts to prices for market-ready, or cash, cattle last week, traders said.

* Wednesday is the first of five days in which funds that follow the Standard & Poor’s Goldman Sachs Commodity Index will sell, or “roll,” their June long CME live cattle and hog, positions into deferred months.

* At 8:38 a.m. CDT (1338 GMT), June was up 0.675 cent per lb to 138.975 cents, and August rose 0.800 cent to 138.725 cents.

* Another choppy trading day may be in store for CME live cattle as investors await reports regarding this week’s cash sales, an analyst said.

* A seasonal rise in cattle numbers and Tuesday’s lower wholesale beef price are bearish factors for cash prices, traders said.

* They said futures’ recent upswing and improved packer margins might underpin cash returns.

* Cash cattle bids in Texas and Kansas developed at $144 per hundredweight (cwt), feedlot sources said.

* Last week, cash cattle in Texas and Kansas sold at $146 per cwt, with sales of $147 to $150 in Nebraska.

* FEEDER CATTLE – May was at 184.375 cents, up 0.900 cent per lb, and August was 1.650 cents higher at 192.900.

* CME live cattle futures’ buying and weak corn prices lifted feeder cattle contracts.

* LEAN HOGS – May lean hogs were at 115.400 cents per lb, down 0.650 cent. Most actively traded June was 0.550 cent lower at 122.675 cents.

* CME hogs slid on profit-taking following Tuesday’s sizable wholesale pork price setback, traders said.

* The delayed start of spring grilling slowed retail demand for pork, a trader said.

* Futures’ premium to CME’s hog index, at 114.21 cents, discouraged buyers.

* Investors are eyeing news that workers at the JBS Worthington, Minnesota hog plant voted to authorize a strike over wages and health benefits, according to statement late on Tuesday from a union representing the employees. (Reporting by Theopolis Waters in Chicago Editing by W Simon)

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