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CME: April Futures Close Higher, Tuesday

01 May 2013

US - April live cattle expired 70 cents higher, while the other contracts finished 30 to 72 1/2 cents lower.

Live cattle futures were higher for much of the morning, but the buying interest didn't last, write ProFarmer analysts.

While June live cattle will take over lead-month status at a big discount to last week's cash trade, there isn't an urgency to aggressively narrow the spread despite tightening feedlot supplies.

June cattle closed 65 lower on the session and down 130 points from the early peak. Some talk of stressful conditions for feedlot cattle this week due to cold and snowy weather helped to provide some support but fears of weaker consumer demand due to the cold and wet outlook into the weekend helped to pressure, say experts at CME.

The market saw choppy and two-sided trade in a 100 point range early on Tuesday and was trading moderately higher on the day into the mid-session. Higher trade in beef prices for the last few sessions has traders a bit more optimistic that cash cattle can at least trade steady this week and this has helped provide underlying support due to the discount of futures to the cash market.

Outside markets are mostly quiet but the sharp break in the US dollar may have helped support commodity markets in general. A lack of deliveries and a firm tone to the hog market added to the positive tone.

The forecast for snow in the western and northern Corn Belt this week was seen as a possible negative demand force and may have sparked some selling.

Choice boxed-beef cut-out values at mid-session were up 17 cents to $194.96 while choice beef was up $1.49 to $187.71 from $186.22 last week at this time.

Slaughter came in higher than expected at 125,000 head which can sometimes point to strong demand from the packer.


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