DTN Livestock Close: Cattle Futures Fueled by Aggressive Packer Spending

    ©Debra L Ferguson Stock Photography

    Live and feeder cattle futures closed sharply higher Friday with spot April surging to its highest level since late February. On the other hand, lean hog futures crashed with triple-digit losses, pressured by fundamental fears and technical-selling.


    Feedlot managers won another Friday showdown, forcing short-bought packers to pay significantly higher prices for ready cattle. Most of the live business in the South was marked at $124, $2 higher than last week. On the other hand, Northern packers paid as much as $126 on a live basis ($4 higher than last week basis Nebraska) and $198 to $199 on a dressed basis, $8 to $9 higher.

    The National hog base closed off $0.11 compared with the Prior Day settlement ($52-$58.50, weighted average $58.22). From Friday to Friday, livestock futures scored the following changes: Apr LC up $5.10; Jun LC up $3.28; May FC up $2.70; Aug FC up $3.75; Jun LH off $4.93; Jul LH off $3.80.

    Corn futures closed 3 cents plus higher, supported by dry conditions in Brazil and sharply higher bean trading. The stock market closed on a mixed basis with the Dow off 11 point and the Nasdaq up 1.

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