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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          06/24 11:39

   Feeders Trend Lower as Corn Attempts to Regain Some Ground

   After trading lower throughout the earlier part of the week, the corn 
complex is now trading higher, which has sent feeders trailing lower.

ShayLe Stewart
DTN Livestock Analyst


   Heading into Friday afternoon, the market is waiting to see what Friday's 
Cattle on Feed report reveals. After months of higher on feed numbers largely 
driven by drought, there's question as to how on feed numbers can still be this 
high as showlists in the North are green, carcass weights are declining and 
throughput has been incredibly strong. July corn is up 9 1/2 cents per bushel 
and July soybean meal is up $8.30. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 
630.37 points.


   What a week it's been for the live cattle market! While the futures market 
skates lower thanks to an overall weak commodity market and deliveries driving 
some longs out of the market, the cash cattle market stayed true to its sober 
realities and saw cattle trade higher despite the board's weakness in the 
North. It's easy to get sucked into the emotional roller coaster of the 
market's minute-by-minute decision making, but as Northern feedlots keenly 
reminded us all, there's power in keeping with the facts and forgoing the 
emotion. June live cattle are up $0.20 at $135.45, August live cattle are down 
$0.22 at $133.67 and October live cattle are down $0.02 at $139.97. The cash 
cattle market hasn't seen any more trade develop and it's likely that the bulk 
of the week's business is done with.

   Throughout the week, Southern cattle have traded for mostly $138 which is 
steady to $2.00 lower than last week. Northern cattle have ranged anywhere from 
$230 to $240, mostly at $234 though which is $4.00 higher than last week.

   Boxed beef prices are higher: choice up $0.45 ($265.11) and select up $0.19 
($245.13) with a movement of 59 loads (30.53 loads of choice, 12.45 loads of 
select, 6.86 loads of trim and 9.54 loads of ground beef).


   The feeder cattle complex is reacting to a reversal in the corn market's 
behavior as the corn market rallies $0.11 to $0.19 higher after trading lower 
throughout the week. The uptick in corn prices has sent the feeder cattle 
contracts lower and it's likely that the market keeps this trend through 
closing as the live cattle market isn't lending much support at this point and 
Friday's Cattle on Feed report is expected to be bearish with potentially 
record on feed numbers for June 1. August feeders are down $2.27 lower at 
$172.57, September feeders are down $1.95 at $174.90 and October feeders are 
down $1.82 at $176.80.


   After enduring significant losses throughout Thursday's trade, the lean hog 
contracts are rallying $1.00 to $2.00 higher as pork cutout values trade higher 
into Friday's afternoon and as the cash hog market sees unexpected support come 
Friday. July lean hogs are up $2.15 at $110.70, August lean hogs are up $2.87 
at $106.55 and October lean hogs are up $1.97 at $92.22. It's likely that 
Friday's market will close within Thursday's parameters, leaving next week the 
task of determining what's next. It's likely that the market doesn't make any 
more significant moves ahead of next week's Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report as 
the market yearns for reassurance.

   The projected lean hog index for June 23 is up $0.23 at $110.90 and the 
actual index for June 22 is down $0.07 at $110.67. Hog prices are higher on the 
Daily Direct Morning Hog Report, up $1.32 with a weighted average of $119.93, 
ranging from $112.00 to $125.50 on 6,771 head and a five-day rolling averaged 
of $117.42. Pork cutouts total 171.57 loads with 152.28 loads of pork cuts and 
19.29 loads of trim. Pork cutout values: up $3.21, $112.98.

   ShayLe Stewart can be reached

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