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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          05/22 12:12

   Summer Hog Futures Remain Under Pressure at Midday

   Lean hog futures near the top of the noon hour are under considerable 
selling pressure with the first five months in the red by triple digits, On the 
other hand, the cattle complex is modestly higher for the most part, recovering 
from early session weakness. 

By John Harrington
DTN Analyst


   The cash cattle arena remains untested at midday with neither bids or asking 
prices well defined. Significant trade volume could easily be delayed until 
Wednesday or Thursday. According to the noon report, the national hog base is 
not tested due to rules of confidentiality. Corn futures are 3 cents plus 
higher at midday, supported by further reports of dryness in Brazil as well as 
parts of the American Midwest. Currently, the stock market is mixed with the 
Dow off 40 points and the Nasdaq up 1.


   Although most live contracts opened moderately lower, short covering has 
caused issues to generally firm since midsession. At midday, prices are 
modestly higher for the most part as bulls seem to be doing a decent job 
holding on to yesterday's major surge. Stuck between ideas of oversold futures 
and further cash vulnerability, traders seem to be treading water until one 
side or the other can gather more convincing evidence. Beef cut-outs are mixed 
at midday, up 0.27 (choice, $231.09) to off 0.11 (select, $207.41) with light 
to moderate box movement (27 loads of choice cuts, 27 loads of select cuts, 8 
loads of trimmings, 9 loads of coarse grinds).


   Feeders are narrowly mixed as the trade moves into the session's final hour. 
Prices range from up 5 to 22 lower. Trade volume seems very slow. 


   Lean hog contracts are under substantial pressure with summer issues headed 
back into the lower 70s. Prices ranged from 32 to 127 points lower. Right or 
wrong, there's not much confidence here that all the recent ballyhoo over a 
trade truce with China means much for the long side of the market. Carcass 
value is some higher at midday with lower picnics and hams overshadow by 
stronger fresh cuts, ribs, and bellies. Pork cut-out: $76.42, up 0.32 CME cash 
lean index for 05/18: 68.38, up 0.64 (DTN Projected lean index for 05/21: 
68.69, up 0.31).

   John A. Harrington can be reached at john.harrington@dtn.com 


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