* Feeder cattle futures up 9th straight day
* CME hogs close mostly lower on corn prices
By Theopolis Waters
CHICAGO, Sept 3 Chicago Mercantile Exchange live
cattle futures climbed nearly 2 percent on Wednesday,
their biggest one-day percentage increase in 1 1/2 months,
driven by strong cash price expectations for this week, traders
October live cattle ended up the maximum 3.000 cents
per lb daily price limit at 155.425. December closed at
158.000, 2.475 cents higher.
A week ago, packers unexpectedly spent more for
market-ready, or cash, cattle for the holiday-shortened
workweek, which suggested they need supplies in the near term,
traders and analysts said.
Last week, packers in the U.S. Plains paid upwards of $158
per hundredweight (cwt) for cash cattle, up as much as $5 from
the week before.
October CME live cattle led advances, partly due to its
sizable price discount to last week's cash returns.
The recent uptick in wholesale beef prices encouraged
futures buyers, despite worries about possible waning beef
demand after Labor Day as grilling gives way to cooking indoors.
Wednesday afternoon's choice wholesale beef price jumped
$1.47 per cwt from Tuesday to $247.58. Select gained 11 cents to
CME feeder cattle end in positive territory for a ninth
consecutive session, led by live cattle market buying and
sharply lower corn prices.
September closed 2.450 cents higher at 222.700
cents, and October 2.950 cents higher at 221.775 cents.
HOGS TURN MOSTLY LOWER
CME hogs finished mostly lower, pressured by profit-taking
and bullish spreads that consisted of traders who simultaneously
sold back months and bought the October contract, traders said.
October closed 1.225 cents per lb higher at 101.100
cents. December ended down 0.300 cent to 93.100 cents,
and February 1.125 cents lower at 90.975 cents.
October hogs also drew support from higher cash prices as
packers bought livestock for early next week's production.
The afternoon's average price of hogs in Iowa/Minnesota rose
87 cents per cwt from Tuesday to $94.18, according to USDA.
Investors actively sold deferred contracts with the view
that sharply lower corn prices may encourage producers to feed
more hogs and nourish them to higher weight.
Fund selling developed after February futures drifted below
its respective 40-day and 100-day moving averages of 91.98 and
Bullish traders may have lightened up some of their long
positions following word that Zoetis Inc. was granted a
conditional license from USDA for its vaccine against the virus
that killed millions of piglets since last year.
"It (vaccine) could be a factor for some of the selling.
Although, from what we're hearing these vaccines overall don't
seem to be very effective," said Archer Financial Services
broker Dennis Smith.
(Editing by Ken Wills)