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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          04/03 12:23

   Prices Even Lower at Midday

   Sharp losses continue at midday Friday with active selling in all livestock 
futures. The inability to hold early gains in cattle contracts is evidence of 
the intensive bearish grip hanging onto the cattle market. 

By Rick Kment
DTN Analyst

General Comments

   Limited buyer support early Friday morning was unable to hold through the 
morning as general market weakness from earlier in the week returned, pushing 
prices to limit losses in select contract months. May corn is down 4 1/4 cents 
per bushel and May soybean meal is down $5.70. The Dow Jones Industrial Average 
is lower 372 points and NASDAQ is down 125 points.  

   LIVE CATTLE 

   Sharp losses have slid into live cattle futures despite the early gains 
which seemed to give a glimmer of hope for renewed buyer support. April live 
cattle futures are limit lower with $4.50 per cwt losses, and prices are 
setting new contract lows with little hope of additional late-day support. The 
uncertainty and concern that beef demand will continue to erode and the 
potential we will see further coronavirus outbreaks over the weekend is putting 
more pressure on prices. 

   Cash cattle markets remain quiet Friday morning with bids still undeveloped. 
At this point, the potential for cash markets to hold out until next week is 
becoming a strong possibility as neither side seems willing to step up to the 
table, with good reason. Asking prices seen earlier may or may not be on the 
table still, given the bearish undertone of the market.

   Boxed beef prices are lower: choice down $0.69 ($231.95) and select down 
$1.11 ($221.01) with a movement of 37 loads (18 loads of choice, 6 loads of 
select, no loads of trim and 13 loads of ground beef).  

   FEEDER CATTLE 

   The inability to hold morning buyer support in feeder cattle futures has 
sparked growing uncertainty through the entire cattle complex. Nearby losses 
are from $4 to $4.50 per cwt, but with expanded trading limits, the potential 
for late-Friday losses is even greater given that trading limits are at $6.75 
for the session. This continues to add even more uncertainty to the entire 
market going into the weekend. The hope that end-of-week short-covering could 
bring some limited buying back to the market seems hard to fathom right now, 
with additional losses developing.  

   LEAN HOGS 

   Sharp losses continue to develop across the lean hog complex with June and 
July futures holding limit losses of $4.50 per cwt at midday. The lack of 
support in the complex based on uncertainty of domestic and export demand in 
early April and is likely to add continued pressure through the rest of the 
session. 

   The projected lean hog index for 4/2/2020 is down $2.43 at $60.65 and the 
actual index for 4/1/2020 is down $1.38 at $63.08. Hog prices are lower on the 
National Direct Morning Hog Report, down $1.75 with a weighted average of 
$42.83, ranging from $40.00 to $45.00 on 4,597 head sold and a five-day rolling 
average of $50.53. Pork cutouts totaled 202.17 loads with 181.75 loads of pork 
cuts and 20.42 loads of trim. Pork cutout values: up $1.51, $60.72. 

   Rick Kment can be reached at rick.kment@dtn.com

    


(CZ)

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