U.S. livestock: Live cattle futures firm

Feeder cattle contracts weak

march feeder cattle
CME March 2019 feeder cattle with 50-day moving average. (Barchart)

Chicago | Reuters — Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle rose slightly on Friday, rebounding from Thursday’s declines on some bargain buying.

Hog futures were mostly higher after falling to their lowest since Aug. 9 on Thursday, providing an opportunity for some end-of-week short-covering.

But feeder cattle contracts weakened to their lowest since Jan. 23, pressured by concerns that the recent cold snap in the U.S. Midwest will raise the costs for producers as they look to fatten up their animals.

Live cattle futures remained below contract highs hit earlier this week.

CME February live cattle rose 0.65 cent, to 125.45 cents/lb., and most active April cattle gained 0.025 cent to 126.23 cents (all figures US$).

Live cattle futures rose for four of the five trading days this week.

CME March feeder cattle closed 0.025 cent lower at 142.525 cents/lb.

CME February hog futures gained 0.1 cent to 56.35 cents/lb. CME April hog futures dropped 0.1 cent to 60.125 cents. Other deferred contracts were slightly higher.

— Mark Weinraub is a Reuters commodities correspondent in Chicago.

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