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CME update: cattle futures close higher despite worries of slaughter slowdown

01 May 2020

CME live cattle futures rise, bolstered by increased wholesale beef prices and strong packer profit margins.

According to Reuters, the CME June live cattle contract settled up 1.675 cents at 85.950 cents per pound and the August contract rose 1.325 cents at 92.100 cents. But CME August feeder cattle futures fell, with most-active August settling down 1.950 cents at 126.500 cents per pound.

The USDA reported export sales of US beef in the latest week at 9,400 tonnes, down 16 percent from the previous week and 43 percent from the prior four-week average.

The daily cattle slaughter, at 80,000 head, was down from 84,000 a week ago and 123,000 a year ago, the USDA said.

Cash cattle trade has been very thin so far this week, with the USDA reporting a few live trades at $95 per cwt in the Texas Panhandle, compared to the previous week's cash trend of $95 to $100.

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