May 23, 2018 / 9:52 PM / in a month

LIVESTOCK-Cattle, hog futures rise on investment fund buying

    By Michael Hirtzer
    CHICAGO, May 23 (Reuters) - U.S. livestock futures rose on
Wednesday, with lean hogs         bouncing from Tuesday's
roughly three-week low on technical and investment fund buying,
traders and analysts said.
    Live cattle futures         climbed to a 1-1/2 week high at
the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, further buoyed by positioning
ahead of a monthly U.S. Department of Agriculture Cattle on Feed
report due on Friday.             
    The Thomson Reuters/CoreCommodity CRB Index             of
19 commodities including livestock futures finished at the
highest levels in nearly three years on Wednesday.
    "We had an agricultural buying spree by the funds," said
Global Commodities Analytics analyst Mike Zuzolo.  
    CME June lean hog futures        finished 1.475 cents higher
at 74.600 cents per pound and July hogs        were up 1.100
cents to 76.225 cents.
    Hogs had declined for three straight sessions, sagging under
pressure of weaker cash prices and chart-based selling, before
notching their largest percentage gains in two weeks. 
    "Regarding hogs, it's a little bit of a market correction,"
said Calvin Hui, a trader with Gator Trading Partners. "The
(wholesale pork) cutout is weak, we have a lot of supply
available in pork and hogs, and it's causing a slower spring in
how prices are moving."
    CME June live cattle        were up 0.550 cent to 105.450
cents per pound and most-active August cattle        gained
2.150 cents to 102.800 cents per pound, with investors
continuing to exit positions in June and roll into August.
    CME August feeder cattle        were up 2.625 cents to
143.350 cents per pound, the highest since May 11.
    However, Zuzolo cautioned that the month-long rally in the
dollar against other global currencies        could create
headwinds for U.S. beef and pork in export markets, where a
strong dollar can make imports more expensive. Traders will be
watching weekly U.S. export sales data due on Thursday for clues
on demand.
    "The question will be, What kind of legs does this (rally)
have given the strong dollar? We'll probably need some good
demand news to keep this going," Zuzolo said.
    Zero cattle were sold at the weekly Fed Cattle Exchange
online auction, according to the auction website. 
    

 (Reporting by Michael Hirtzer
Editing by Matthew Lewis)
  
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