CATTLE: Cash cattle last week: $142.00 south, and $225.00 Neb. (some $142-143.00 live); on 146 boxed loads cut outs higher at up. $.47 @ $214.32(c)/dn. $.13 @ $211.36(s) on moderate/good demand; Carcass Equivalent: $204.890 up. $.09.
COMMENTS: Weekly beef export sales fell 41% to 9,900t led by H/K at 3,900t and of note Japan cancels 1200t and China cancels 100t; Cattle-On-Feed at 2:00; open interest rose 2,049 amid moderate volume (of note, Feb. dropped 1090 while the back months picked up modest amounts individually). April’s discount tricky i.e. are higher kills coming? Or is this just another case of futures being nonchalant then spiking as we saw last year? I could easily be a ‘demand bear’ over beef and ultimately trump the current ‘supply bull’ in the live. But still treating as a trading affair for now.
Interior cash hogs mixed @ up. $2.87(w)/no/comp. (e) with rough avg. $90.00); pork cut outs up. $2.88 @ $91.92, led by bells and loins up sharply. Lean index as of 02/19 @ $89.28 up. $1.80.
COMMENTS: Cash hogs called up to $2.00 higher? Weather the problem? I read where there was a record number of PEDv cases reported last week but I also understand from a producer source it can be contained if caught early enough. Nonetheless, 2 bullish outside news items: 1) weekly pork export sales rose 26% to 16,000t with Japan leading at 3,900 then Mx. at 3,900t (and even Australia at 2100t); and 2) rumor has it that bird flu losses infected China’s largest chicken producer into bankruptcy. If buying whipsaws, stay in the April contract as long as the interior keeps moving up. Open interest fell 5,815 led by Feb. off 8,800 (rest up modestly) amid moderate volume.