Moderate gains are developing across the livestock complex Tuesday although overall volume remains sluggish and very limited direction is expected to come out of the pre-holiday days. Markets are trading on an abbreviated holiday schedule and will close early Tuesday, remaining closed until Thursday morning. Corn prices are higher in light trade Monday. July corn futures are 7 cents higher. Stock markets are mixed in light trade. The Dow Jones is 14 points higher while Nasdaq is down 16 points.
Firm buyer activity is seen in the live cattle market with traders looking for additional support following the recent market support over the last week. Limited trade activity is seen due to the holiday break Wednesday, but the overall lack of direction in the complex may spark some follow through buyer during the end of the week. Cash markets remain quiet with bids still undeveloped. This is not a surprise to nearly anyone watching the market as trade is expected to be delayed until after the holiday as both sides move into the market Thursday. A few asking prices have been reported around $112 live and $185 dressed basis, but this is not expected to draw any additional attention to the market. These asking prices are expected to hold when feedlot managers return to work Thursday. Boxed Beef cut-outs at midday are mixed, $1.56 higher (select) and down $1.01 per cwt (choice) with light movement of 84 total loads reported (46 loads of choice cuts, 22 loads of select cuts, 6 loads of trimmings, 10 loads of ground beef).
Light to moderate follow through buyer support is trickling into the feeder cattle complex despite the narrow losses seen early in the session. With markets closing early Tuesday and trade closed on Wednesday due to the holiday break, many traders have already exited the market. The light activity that is seen is helping to extend the market support seen early in the week. This is moving price 95 cents per cwt higher in limited volume and elevating prices to near $153 per cwt in front month August contracts.
Firm gains have trickled into lean hog futures trade late Tuesday morning following very limited direction in all markets. August futures are leading the complex higher with a rally of $1.82 per cwt. The main focus in the lean hog futures complex seems to be based on position adjustments following the first of July. August and October futures were the only contract not to move higher late Monday, thus there is some spill over buying moving into these contracts through the morning that was accomplished in all other contracts during the Monday session. Trade is expected to remain sluggish ahead of the early market close Tuesday near noon. Cash prices are lower on the National Direct morning cash hog report. The weighted average price is down $0.44 at $77.10 per cwt with the range from $68.00 to $79.50 on 4,948 head reported sold. Cash prices are higher on the Iowa/Minnesota Direct morning cash hog report. The weighted average price is up $0.44 at $78.99 per cwt with the range from $68.00 to $79.50 on 1,428 head reported sold. The National Pork Plant Report posted 205 loads selling with carcass values adding $1.30 per cwt. Lean hog index for 6/29 is at $82.97 down 0.72 with a projected two-day index of $82.51, down 0.46.
Rick Kment can be reached at email@example.com
© Copyright 2018 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.