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DTN Midday Livestock Comments          11/27 12:05

   Livestock Contracts Trade Mixed Following Thanksgiving

   Livestock contracts continue to trade in a lackadaisical fashion on Friday 
as a lot of traders are soaking up a long weekend.

ShayLe Stewart
DTN Livestock Analyst


   Heading into the afternoon, the livestock contracts are trading in a slow, 
methodical post-Thanksgiving fashion. With the markets closing early Friday 
afternoon and a lot of traders already checked out for the week for a long 
weekend, Friday's trade throughout the futures market and in the cash cattle 
market has developed in an unhurried cadence. March corn is up 5 cents per 
bushel, and January soybean meal is down $0.40. The Dow Jones Industrial 
Average is down 26.25 points, and the NASDAQ is up 93.46 points.


   The live cattle market couldn't pick up where it left off Thursday and rally 
into Friday's trade. December live cattle are down $0.60 at $110.77, February 
live cattle are down $0.82 at $113.32 and April live cattle are down $0.45 at 
$117.02. Friday's unsupported trade really stems from the shortened holiday 
week. The cash cattle market is still mostly quiet with a few bids being 
renewed in Nebraska at $111 and a few cattle sold Friday morning in Texas for 
$112. Some feedlots in eastern Nebraska have upped asking prices to $175 as 
they know that packers need cattle and are in position to wait until the market 
pays up.

   Beef net sales of 15,500 metric tons (mt) were reported for 2020 -- a 
marketing-year low -- up noticeably from the previous week and from the prior 
four-week average. Increases were primarily for China (2,000 mt, including 
decreases of 100 mt), Japan (1,800 mt, including decreases of 2,700 mt) and 
Kuwait (100 mt).

   Boxed beef prices are mixed: choice down $1.21 ($243.85) and select up $0.04 
($220.94) with a movement of 27 loads (11.58 loads of choice, 2.97 loads of 
select, 4.80 loads of trim and 7.16 loads of ground beef).


   While live cattle contracts are trading lower, the feeder cattle market is 
hoping to round out the week with the bullish attitude that's been supported 
since Monday. January feeders are up $0.15 at $140.32, March feeders are up 
$0.02 at $139.30 and April feeders are up $0.07 at $140.47. The corn market is 
seeing some support that has elevated nearby contracts to $0.03 to $0.04 
higher; thus far, the corn market's gain hasn't derailed the feeder cattle 


   The lean hog market isn't being supported following the big Thanksgiving 
holiday. December lean hogs are down $0.15 at $66.02, February lean hogs are 
down $0.72 at $66.95 and April lean hogs are down $0.75 at $70. Following 
Thursday's stronger close, the market was hopeful to keep scaling higher and to 
eventually push out of the market's recent sideways trade. But based on 
Friday's trade thus far, the hog market isn't looking prime to finding 
midafternoon support before closing.

   Pork net sales of 18,800 mt reported for 2020 were down 35% from the 
previous week and 47% from the prior four-week average. The three primary 
increases were for Mexico (9,400 mt, including decreases of 600 mt), Japan 
(3,900 mt, including decreases of 200 mt) and China (2,500 mt, including 
decreases of 600 mt).

   The projected lean hog index for 11/24/2020 is down $0.32 at $67.38, and the 
actual index for 11/23/2020 is down $0.13 at $67.70. Hog prices are lower on 
the National Direct Morning Hog Report, down $0.41 with a weighted average of 
$57.48, ranging from $57 to $58.50 on 3,840 head and a five-day rolling average 
of $57.94. Pork cutouts total 129.64 loads with 116.86 loads of pork cuts and 
12.78 loads of trim. Pork cutout values: up $0.45, $78.80.

   ShayLe Stewart can be reached


   Editor's Note: See DTN Livestock Analyst ShayLe Stewart's complete 2021 
market outlook live by attending the DTN Ag Summit, Dec. 7-9. This year's event 
is virtual, and as a DTN subscriber you can attend for FREE. Our premier farmer 
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