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DTN Early Word Livestock Comments      09/24 06:44
   Mixed Trade Ahead of the Reports

   Strong gains in the financial markets Thursday provided some support to the
livestock complex. Most of the trading activity was the result of traders
looking ahead to the reports to be released Friday.

Robin Schmahl
DTN Contributing Analyst

   Cattle: Steady   Futures: Higher   Live Equiv:   $224.56 -1.21*

   Hogs:  Steady   Futures: Mixed    Lean Equiv:  $111.51 -2.63**

   * based on formula estimating live cattle equivalent of gross packer revenue.

   (The Live Cattle Equiv. Index has been updated to depict recent changes in
live cattle weights and grading percentages.)

   ** based on formula estimating lean hog equivalent of gross packer revenue


   Cattle futures closed mixed, but higher in most contracts. Price strength
during the day gave way as traders decided to even up positions before the
final trading day ahead of the Cattle on Feed report. Cash cattle trading in
line with Wednesday provided little to get excited about as cattle in the South
traded steady with last week while the average trade in the North was $1.00
lower. There may be some cash traded Friday, but both packers and feedlots may
wait for the results on the Cattle of Feed report to be released after the
close of trading. The average trade estimate for on-feed numbers is 97.9% or
11.155 million head. In order for cattle to move higher and regain some of the
losses since the previous report, on-feed numbers may need to be lower than
anticipated on this report. Slowing demand and lower beef prices may offset
some bullishness that could be seen from the numbers that will be released.
Boxed beef continues to fall with choice cuts down $2.23 and select cuts down
$0.51 Thursday.
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