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Published July 08, 2015, 03:38 PM

Stock market turmoil rattles CME live cattle futures

CHICAGO - Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle futures settled lower on Wednesday, pressured in part by the tumbling Chinese stock market and its impact on Wall Street, traders said.

By: Theopolis Waters, Reuters

CHICAGO - Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle futures settled lower on Wednesday, pressured in part by the tumbling Chinese stock market and its impact on Wall Street, traders said.

World markets were shaken during the day by a halt in New York Stock Exchange trading, the crash in Chinese stocks and Greece's ongoing economic woes.

"Who wants to take a speculative position if you're up to your eyebrows on a bad position on the stock market," said Commodity Services Inc broker Rich Albaugh.

August and October fell through key moving average support levels that ignited fund liquidation.

August closed 2.075 cents per lb lower at 149.000 cents, and below the 10-day moving average of 149.86 cents. October finished down 1.625 cents at 152.400 cents and under the 10-day moving average of 152.600 cents.

Slumping seasonal beef demand and the day's futures sell-off sidelined potential buyers and threatened expectations of steady-to-better cash prices this week.

Wednesday morning's wholesale choice beef price fell $1.67 per cwt from Tuesday to $243.00. Select cuts dropped 66 cents to $240.43, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said.

Market-ready, or cash, bids surfaced in Kansas and Texas at $149 to $150 per cwt versus asking prices of up to $153, feedlot sources said. Cash cattle last week in U.S. Plains fetched mostly $148 to $152.

Funds involved in CME's livestock markets sold or "rolled" the August contract and simultaneously bought deferred months. The strategy is known as the "roll" and is tied to the Standard & Poor's Goldman Sachs Commodity Index (S&P GSCI).

Wednesday was the first of five days for the S&P GSCI roll procedure.

Live cattle market losses dragged down CME feeder cattle contracts.

August closed 3.500 cents per lb lower at 213.625 cents.

MOST HOGS FINISH LOWER

Firm cash prices underpinned CME July lean hogs, but burdensome supply forecasts pressured deferred trading months, traders said.

July closed up 0.250 cent per lb at 79.500 cents, August 0.550 cent lower at 75.800 cents and October down 0.675 cent at 65.125 cents.

The average cash hog price in Iowa/Minnesota on Wednesday morning rose 23 cents per cwt from Tuesday to $78.41, the USDA said.

Cash hog prices may be about to top out based on thinner packer margins hurt by fluctuating pork cutout values and the four-day run up in cash costs, a trader said.

The USDA quoted the morning's wholesale pork price at $81.51 per cwt, down 9 cents from Tuesday.

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