CME live cattle close mixed

Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle futures settled mixed on Thursday after an up-and-down session, supported by futures’ discounts to preliminary cash prices but pressured by profit-taking, traders said.

June closed up 0.175 cent per pound at 131.375 cents, and August down 0.150 cent at 124.025 cents.

On Thursday, a small group of animals at the Fed Cattle Exchange fetched $136.50 to $137.00 per cwt versus last week’s average top price of $132.17.

About 6,000 head of market-ready, or cash, cattle on Wednesday in the northern U.S. Plains brought $135 per cwt, compared to roughly $137 there a week earlier.

Investors expect packers to pay more for supplies this week given their impressive profits and good wholesale beef demand ahead of Father’s Day meal preparations, said traders and analysts.

But beef demand typically subsides this time of year when grocers tend to promote more pork and chicken for the summer grilling season, said analsyts and traders.

Profit-taking, technical selling and sporadic live cattle futures selling pressured CME feeder cattle contracts.

August feeders ended 0.850 cent per pound lower at 153.950 cents.

Source: Reuters (via Drovers)