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DTN Early Word Opening Livestock       04/03 06:31
   Another Round of Market Losses Likely Friday

   The extreme market pressure this week is likely to continue Friday as
technical and fundamental market direction remains under pressure at the end of
the week. The potential for limited end-of-the-week short-covering could
potentially bring some much needed relief.

By Rick Kment
DTN Analyst

Cattle: Lower   Futures: Lower   Live Equiv $151.99 -1.56*
Hogs:   Lower   Futures: Lower   Lean Equiv $ 64.10 -2.84**

*  based on formula estimating live cattle equivalent of gross packer revenue
** based on formula estimating lean hog equivalent of gross packer revenue


   Additional cash cattle trade is expected before the end of the week despite
the significant pressure in futures and beef values this week. Following light
trade Wednesday at significantly lower money than last week, both sides seem to
have hit "pause" given the limit losses in futures trade Thursday. But packers
are expected to need additional cattle in the next couple of weeks, which may
spark renewed bid activity during the day on Friday. Negotiated trade could be
even lighter than in the last few weeks due to the availability of contracted
cattle to packers after the first of the month. The JBS plant in Pennsylvania
has been shut down the last two weeks due to the coronavirus, and even though
it is generally small in comparison to major packing plants, it is the largest
plant in the Eastern U.S., which is creating a disruption of supplies for
cattle producers within the region. The concern that other plants within the
system, especially in the Midwest, may need to close due to virus levels
continues to be a major concern. Following limit losses in live and feeder
cattle Thursday, expanded trading limits are in place once again. This could
spark renewed bearish market factors as traders search for any sign of support.
With the weekend approaching, the hope that end-of-the-week short-covering will
be able to take root and give a little relief to the sharp market losses that
developed in early April. Friday slaughter is expected at 119,000 head.
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