February 22, 2018 / 10:57 PM / 10 months ago

LIVESTOCK-CME live cattle extends losses, hogs further gains

    CHICAGO, Feb 22 (Reuters) - Chicago Mercantile Exchange live
cattle on Thursday lost ground for a second day in a row,
weighed down by lower cash prices and an increased supply
outlook, traders said.
    They said sell stops and fund liquidation contributed to
market declines.
    Some investors adjusted positions before the U.S. Department
of Agriculture (USDA) monthly Cattle-On-Feed report on
Friday.            
    February         live cattle, which will expire on Feb. 28,
closed 1.300 cents per pound lower at 128.350 cents. April
        ended down 0.850 cent at 125.375 cents, and below the
10-day moving average of 125.650 cents.
    Packers this week paid mostly $128 per cwt for
slaughter-ready, or cash, cattle in the U.S. Plains that a week
earlier traded at $130.
    The market has two conflicting issues; increased supplies
ahead and improved wholesale beef buying interest than in recent
weeks, said Allendale Inc. chief strategist Rich Nelson.
    Wholesale beef prices rose four straight sessions after
packers hiked beef costs to retailers to improve their margins,
said analysts and traders, said analysts and traders.
                 
    Thursday's U.S. government's monthly cold storage report
showed total January beef stocks at roughly 500 million pounds
versus average analysts' estimate of 495.4 million.
    Technical selling and lower live cattle futures sank CME
feeder cattle.
    March         feeders ended 0.650 cent per pound lower at
146.000 cents. 

    HOGS UP AGAIN
    CME hog futures rose for a second straight day in
anticipation of a cash price turnaround, partly supported by
increased retail ham purchases as the Easter holiday approaches,
said traders.
    CME hogs also benefited from fund buying that kicked in
after contracts broke through technical resistance levels.
    Hog futures gained further after some investors reversed
long CME live cattle short CME lean hog spreads that were
implemented earlier this week.
    The USDA put January's total pork inventory at about 568
million pounds. Analysts, on average, had projected 549.1
million pounds. 
    April hogs         closed 1.375 cents per pound higher at
71.275 cents, and above the 200-day moving average of 71.347
cents. May         finished 1.275 cents higher at 77.425 cents,
and above the 20-day moving average of 76.933 cents.

 (Reporting by Theopolis Waters; Editing by Tom Brown)
  
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