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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          07/29 12:09

   Lean Hog Futures Retreat Farther at Midday

   The lean hog pit remains under pressure at midday, disappointed by defensive 
cash news and the market's inability of attract buying interest. On the other 
hand, the cattle complex is mostly higher near the top of the hour with feeder 
contracts once again gaining ground on their live counterparts. 

By John Harrington
DTN Analyst


   Cattle country is very quiet today with few bids reported. Some asking 
prices have been identified around $168-170 in the South and $265-270 in the 
North. According to the midday report, the national hog base is 0.56 lower (on 
a very light test) compared with the Prior Day settlement ($120.00-122.00, 
weighted average $121.02). Corn futures are 6-9 cents lower, pressured by long 
liquidation and general ideas of a big crop in the making. The stock market is 
bouncing higher at midday with the Dow back above 17,000. In general, Wall 
Street is supported by upbeat earnings from corporations including Merck & Co. 
and a better-than-expected report on consumer confidence. The Dow is 32 points 
higher at this time with the Nasdaq positive by 13.


   Mixed, up 55 to off 25. Although most contracts here are some higher in late 
morning action, nearby contracts have been under modest pressure. Trade volume 
seems quite slow as bulls and bear probably stall until cash prospects become 
more clear. Beef cut-outs are sharply higher at midday, up $2.60 (choice, 
$261.90) to $2.77 (select, $258.94) with light box movement (38 loads of choice 
cuts, 32 loads of select cuts, five loads of trimmings, 14 loads of coarse 


   Up 20 to 100. For the most part, feeder issues are moderately higher at 
midday, girded by follow-through buying and the recent $7 surge of the cash 
index. Of course, we're again at a stage where every tick higher effectively 
rewrites the record book. 


   Mostly 67 to 205 lower. Lean hog futures continue to come unglued, 
apparently oblivious to either spot cash premiums or the ongoing waves of 
bullishness in the cattle complex. Fourth-quarter contracts are holding up 
better than either spot August or 2015 contracts, but that doesn't seem to be 
saying much. Carcass value is significantly higher at midday thanks to decent 
appreciation in all primals except the picnic. Pork cut-out: $133.46, up $2.52. 
CME cash lean 07/25: 129.76, off 0.57 (DTN Projected lean index for 07/28: 
128.91, off 0.85).


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