August 22, 2017 / 8:49 PM / a year ago

LIVESTOCK-CME live cattle futures breaks 4-session losing skid

    * Feeder cattle finishes up sharply
    * Lean hogs again sinks to four-month low
    * USDA cold storage beef, pork results

    By Theopolis Waters
    CHICAGO, Aug 22 (Reuters) - Chicago Mercantile Exchange live
cattle futures        on Tuesday settled higher for the first
time in five sessions, spurred by short-covering and bargain
buying, said traders.
    Some contracts punched through key technical resistance
barriers, which triggered fund buying and pre-established buy
    August         ended 0.725 cent per pound higher at 106.725
cents. October         closed 1.875 cents higher at 107.725
cents and above the 200-day moving average of 107.525 cents.
    "Futures were technically overdone to the downside which
gave people a reason by buy the market," a trader said.
    The August contract lagged behind other trading months in
advance of this week's prices for slaughter-ready, or cash,
cattle that a week ago brought $109 to $110 per cwt.
    Plentiful cattle and beef supplies might discourage packers
from paying more for livestock this week.          
    Market participants look to Wednesday's Fed Cattle Exchange
sale of roughly 1,000 animals as an indication of cash prices in
the Plains this week.
    On Tuesday the U.S. Department of Agriculture's monthly cold
storage data showed total beef stocks at 430.4 million pounds,
up from the 416.1 million pound average trade estimate.
    Technical buying, live cattle futures turnaround and higher
cash feeder cattle prices boosted CME feeder cattle contracts.
    August feeders         closed 2.275 cents per pound higher
at 142.075 cents.
    Tuesday morning's sharply lower wholesale pork values, and
downward-trending cash hog prices, dropped CME lean hogs       
to a four-month low for third consecutive session, said traders.
    October         ended down 0.800 cents per pound lower at
63.875 cents, and December         finished down 0.800 cent at
59.050 cents.
    Plentiful seasonal supplies continued to pressure cash
returns, while declining costs for pork bellies this time of
year weighed on overall wholesale pork values, a trader said.
    USDA on Tuesday reported July total pork stocks at 556.2
million pounds, down from the 561.4 million average forecast -
partly due to the lowest pork belly inventory on record for the
    "There's certainly no shortage of hogs. So several months in
a row of record-low bellies in storage have more to with
impressive bacon demand than anything else," a trader said.   

 (Reporting by Theopolis Waters; Editing by Marguerita Choy)
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