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CME update: cattle futures rise, but remain short on the week

27 July 2020

US live cattle futures rose on 24 July following four straight days of falls.

Reuters reports that traders are anticipating the monthly Cattle on Feed report from the USDA.

Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) August live cattle futures settled up 0.475 cent at 101.325 cents per pound and October live cattle added .500 cent to close at 105.100 cents per pound.

For the week, October live cattle fell 1.7 percent, the first weekly loss after five weeks of gains.

CME August feeder cattle futures settled up 0.025 cent at 142.050 cents per pound, while September feeder cattle trimmed 0.425 cent to 142.750 cents per pound.

For the week, September feeder cattle slipped .4 percent, the largest weekly drop in six weeks.

In its Cattle on Feed report, released after the market closed on 24 July, the USDA said 1.8 million head were placed in feedlots in June, up 2 percent from a year earlier. Analysts had been expecting a 3.8 percent increase.

"Most of the increase in placements was in these lightweight animals," said Altin Kalo, economist with Steiner Consulting Group. "The real worry is if we have more large animals placed on feed at a time when cattle are backed up on the front end."

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