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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          06/18 11:48

   Traders Cautious, Pulling Livestock Futures Lower at Midday

   Traders remain skeptical of overly supporting the cattle contracts ahead of 
seeing what the week's cash cattle market does. 

ShayLe Stewart
DTN Livestock Analyst


   The livestock complex is mixed as the market sees both the live cattle and 
feeder cattle contracts trade lower and the lean hog complex is seeing mixed 
interest from traders. More than anything, traders seem hesitant to overly 
support the contracts before seeing what the cash cattle market does and before 
seeing what Thursday's export report amounts too. July corn is up 5 1/2 cents 
per bushel and July soybean meal is up $2.90. The Dow Jones Industrial Average 
is down 4.86 points.


   The live cattle complex is lower as traders wait to see what the cash cattle 
market accomplishes later this week. After rallying the market sharply higher 
Friday afternoon, traders don't want to be over aggressive in trading the 
complex higher and then potentially see cash cattle prices drift lower later 
this week. Feedlots are again going to strive to push cash cattle prices higher 
this week as they know that their window to do so before boxed beef prices 
seasonally peak and begin to trade lower is dwindling. June live cattle are 
down $0.22 at $186.82, August live cattle are down $0.45 at $182.35 and October 
live cattle are down $0.52 at $184.10.

   Boxed beef prices are higher: choice up $0.49 ($320.96) and select up $1.36 
($306.18) with a movement of 108 loads (69.28 loads of choice, 17.33 loads of 
select, 8.48 loads of trim and 13.05 loads of ground beef).


   With corn prices $0.04 to $0.05 higher and the live cattle complex lending 
little to no support currently, the feeder cattle complex is also trading 
lower. It's a balancing act to manage what's happening in the futures complex 
compared to what's happening out in the countryside as demand for feeders and 
calves continues to drive prices higher. But at this point, traders don't seem 
willing to acknowledge the support that's evident in current feeder cattle 
sales as they solely want to see what the live cattle contracts do and what 
this week's cash cattle market does. August feeders are down $1.37 at $259.95, 
September feeders are down $1.40 at $261.35 and October feeders are down $1.35 
at $261.95.


   The lean hog complex is seeing mixed interest from traders as the market's 
nearby contracts trade slightly lower while the deferred contracts trade mildly 
higher. It is encouraging to see pork cutout values are slightly higher and no 
cut is seeing any wild price swing compared to Monday. July lean hogs are down 
$1.05 at $94.30, August lean hogs are down $0.57 at $91.30 and October lean 
hogs are down $0.15 at $78.07.

   The projected CME Lean Hog Index for 6/17/2024 is down $0.14 at $90.59, and 
the actual index for 6/14/2024 is down $0.71 at $90.73. Hog prices on the Daily 
Direct Morning Hog Report average $89.90, ranging from $85.00 to $90.00 on 
1,688 head and a five-day rolling average of $87.92. Pork cutouts total 181.89 
loads with 165.07 loads of pork cuts and 16.82 loads of trim. Pork cutout 
values: up $0.04, $98.98.

   ShayLe Stewart can be reached


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