It was a mixed bag in today’s livestock trade. The first two months of live cattle, October and December finished a hair lower, while February and April squeaked out small gains. Similarly, feeder cattle saw small losses in the front months but saw strength out in the January contract. On the pork side it was the opposite with the front months settling higher and the deferred lower. All in all, today’s price action did little to alter the technical landscape as funds defend a decent sized net long position.
Friday’s commitment of traders report showed Managed Money aka Funds, holding a net long position of 94,024 futures and options contracts, broken down that is 106,205 longs Versus 12,181 shorts. Though that position is smaller than what we saw in the middle of Summer, it was up 4,282 contracts from the previous week.
This morning’s wholesale boxed beef report was firm with choice cuts up $3.42 to 317.91 and select cuts up 1.92 to 292.21. Friday’s 5-area weekly average price for live steers was reported at 182.69 with dressed steers being reported at 290.62. Both were on the weaker end than earlier in the week. Friday’s slaughter was reported at 122,000 head which put the weekly total at 621,000 head that’s 11,000 more than the previous week but 4,000 head less than the same period last year.