September 14, 2017 / 8:42 PM / 10 months ago

LIVESTOCK-Cattle futures weaken on technicals after 2-week high

    By Michael Hirtzer
    CHICAGO, Sept 14 (Reuters) - U.S. live cattle futures
        eased slightly in a technical selloff on Thursday after
prices earlier notched a two-week high, traders said.
    Lean hog futures         also were mostly lower, sagging
under pressure from abundant supplies and declines in cash
markets, while feeder cattle         were modestly higher at the
Chicago Mercantile Exchange.
    There was little fresh news in any of the markets and
dealers were waiting for trades to develop in U.S. Plains cash
cattle markets.
    "Both live and feeder cattle are testing key resistance
levels. When the market has been coming down like it has in a
longer-term trend, you're going to fail when you test that
(resistance level) for the first time," said Zaner Group analyst
Ted Seifried.
    CME October live cattle        settled 0.625 cent lower at
106.925 cents per pound, reversing from their session peak of
108.900 cents, the highest levels since Aug. 28.
    The contract has clawed back from multi-month lows reached
on Aug. 31 but gains have been limited by sufficient cattle
supplies and declines in beef prices that kept a lid on meat
packer demand.
    Some traders expected Plains cash cattle sales to develop
near last week's deals of $105 per cwt, and that sentiment has
buoyed futures so far this week.
    Choice-grade wholesale beef prices were up 60 cents to
$191.00 per cwt while select cuts eased $1.97 to $186.72, the
U.S. Department of Agriculture said after the close of trading.
    CME October feeder cattle        finished 0.475 cent higher
at 149.625 cents per pound. The contract earlier hit 150.775
cents per pound, highest since Aug. 3.
    Feeder cattle were driven higher in part by stronger demand
for young cattle for grazing amid good pasture conditions in the
southern Plains, traders said.
    CME October lean hogs        were up 0.125 cent to 59.575
cents per pound, holding above Wednesday's roughly 11-month low.
The December contract declined 0.325 cent to 56.775 cents.
    Cash hog prices extended losses, easing 51 cents to $53.79
cents in the top Iowa and Minnesota market, according to USDA. 
Wholesale pork prices also declined, dropping $1.10 to $79.20
per cwt.                  
    "Maybe we get some stability from oversold (conditions) in
hogs, but I'm still worried that large supplies could take us
another leg lower," Seifried said.

 (Reporting by Michael Hirtzer; Editing by Alistair Bell)
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