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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          12/04 12:10

   Livestock Complex Leans Lower 

   The livestock contracts struggle to trade higher Wednesday morning while 
both the lean hog and cattle cash markets show signs of positivity. 

By ShayLe Stewart
DTN Livestock Analyst

General Comments

   The livestock complex still lags to find support to bolster prices higher, 
but with time cash prices may boost higher trade and a positive outlook. March 
corn is down 3 3/4 cents per bushel and January soybean meal is up $2.70. The 
Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 172.58 points and NASDAQ is up 43.44 points.


   Live cattle contracts struggle to any essence of support for the board early 
Wednesday morning. December live cattle are down $1.02 at $119.52, February 
live cattle are down $1.60 at $124.05 and April live cattle contracts are down 
$1.50 at $124.72. The board quivers lower, but higher anticipated cash prices 
may be able to boost morale later in the week. It's a positive sign for cattle 
sold Wednesday morning on the Fed Cattle Exchange. Of the 1,189 head consigned 
to the sale, 860 head sold for an average price of $118.36. Cash prices last 
week ranged from $117 to $119 in the South, and upwards to $120 in the North; 
given that the FCE prices landed smack dap in the middle of last week's prices, 
feeder's may be able to push prices higher again later this week. Current 
asking prices are open at $122 live, and $193-plus for dressed cattle. As of 
now there is only one bid placed in Nebraska at $184 -- $9.00 lower than 
current asking prices. 

   Boxed beef prices are lower: choice down $2.57 ($227.58) and select is down 
$1.53 ($210.87) with a morning movement of 89 loads (54.52 loads of choice, 
14.95 loads of select, 7.70 loads of trim and 11.39 loads of ground beef). 


   Feeder cattle markets plug lower, being only 25 cents shy of $2.00 lower in 
some contracts. With a depressed board, and a surplus of calves in the sale 
barns, it makes it tough for prices to rally during the holiday season. January 
feeders are down $1.72 at $140.65, March feeders are down $1.80 at $141.12 and 
April feeders are down $1.75 at $143.20. If cash cattle prices can rally the 
marketplace higher later this week, feeder contracts may reciprocate some of 
the energy. 


   The board may have some indecisive contracts Wednesday morning that dipped 
just slightly lower, but the cash momentum keeps building in the countryside. 
December lean hogs are down $0.62 at $61.87, February lean hogs are down $0.30 
at $68.05 and April lean hogs are up $0.05 at $74.32. You can add another case 
of African swine fever to the list as the agriculture minister of Poland shared 
that authorities had earlier this year killed nearly 270,000 wild boar in 
eastern Poland in efforts to help stop the disease from spreading to domestic 
herds and it was largely effective until this last month when authorities 
stated that 20 more wild boar were killed with the disease. 

   The projected lean hog index for 12/03/19 is up $0.82 at $58.20, and the 
actual index for 12/02/19 is up $0.03 at $57.38. Hog prices are higher again on 
the National Direct Morning Hog Report, up $0.64 with a weighted average of 
$45.66, ranging from $41.00 to $46.50 on 4,010 head sold and a five-day rolling 
average of $43.94. Pork cutouts total 171.85 loads with 148.83 loads of pork 
cuts and 23.01 loads of trim. Pork cutout values are up $0.74 at $81.35. 

   ShayLe Stewart can be reached shayle.stewart@dtn.com 


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