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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          04/15 11:45

   Cattle Turn Higher  by Midday Monday

   After last week's continued pressure, the cattle complex is relieved to see 
some support enter its market. 

ShayLe Stewart
DTN Livestock Analyst


   The livestock complex is trading mixed into Monday's noon hour as the market 
is seeing ample support in the cattle sector, but the lean hog contracts are 
continuing to drift lower. Note that there will be a Cattle on Feed report 
released on Friday. May corn is down 4 cents per bushel and May soybean meal is 
down $6.90. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 99.87 points.


   The live cattle complex has taken a confident approach to Monday's market as 
the contracts are all trading $1 to $2 higher into Monday's noon hour. I was 
anxious to see what the market would do today as traders pressured the market's 
support plane from April 12 and were mostly likely to either turn the market 
lower, signaling that a short-term bottom hasn't been established, or turn the 
market, building more confidence in the current support plane. Thankfully, 
traders have fully supported the market this morning and it's looking like the 
complex's support at $172 in the June contract is firm and holding. June live 
cattle are up $2.85 at $174.32, August live cattle are up $2.87 at $171.62 and 
October live cattle are up $2.65 at $174.42. Please note that there will be 
another Cattle on Feed report released this upcoming Friday. New showlists 
appear to be higher in all major feeding areas.

   Last week, Southern live cattle traded for $181 to $185, but mostly at $182, 
which is $2 lower than the previous week's weighted average. Northern dressed 
cattle traded for $293 to $301, but mostly at $293 to $295, which is $2 to $4 
lower than the previous week's weighted average. Last week's negotiated cash 
cattle trade totaled 64,875 head. Of that, 75% (48,628 head) were committed to 
the nearby delivery. The remaining 25% (16,247 head) were committed to the 
deferred delivery.

   Boxed beef prices are higher: choice up $0.54 ($301.11) and select up $0.25 
($295.79) with a movement of 35 loads (20.20 loads of choice, 6.94 loads of 
select, zero loads of trim and 8.09 loads of ground beef).


   Seeing the feeder cattle contracts trade higher brings cattlemen a bit of 
relief as the market has endured constant pressure over the last month. Between 
the higher note in the live cattle complex, the slight downturn in corn prices 
and the continued support of feeder cattle in the countryside,  traders are 
seeing more than enough support to confidently advance the feeder cattle 
market. May feeders are up $4.55 at $238.75, August feeders are up $4.45 at 
$249.95 and September feeders are up $4.32 at $251.27.


   The lean hog complex is again trading lower as the market yearns for 
technical interest from traders, but after having run the market to new 
contract highs just last week, traders remain cautious in their support of the 
hog complex. Part of traders' leeriness likely stems from concerns over whether 
consumers will continue to be avid supporters through the summer with inflation 
still wreaking havoc on the economy and their hard-earned dollars. June lean 
hogs are down $0.05 at $102.02, July lean hogs are down $1.17 at $103.07 and 
August lean hogs are down $1.07 at $101.17. 

   The projected lean hog index is delayed from the source. Hog prices are 
unavailable in the Daily Direct Morning Hog Report due to confidentiality. 
However, we can see that only 180 head have traded and the market's five-day 
rolling average now sits at $87.94. Pork cutouts total 138.16 loads with 124.04 
loads of pork cuts and 14.13 loads of trim. Pork cutout values: up $3.10, 

   ShayLe Stewart can be reached at



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