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DTN Early Word Livestock Comments      05/20 06:28
   Mixed Trading Ahead of Report

   Nearby live cattle contracts closing positive along with deferred hog
contracts. Live cattle showed limited price fluctuations. Feeder cattle were
under pressure again despite lower corn futures. Hogs saw lower cash and

Robin Schmahl
DTN Contributing Analyst

   Cattle: Steady       Futures: Mixed    Live Equiv:    $194.69 +$0.61*

   Hogs: Steady        Futures: Mixed    Lean Equiv:    $110.88 -$0.15**

   *Based on formula estimating live cattle equivalent of gross packer revenue.
(The Live Cattle Equiv. Index has been updated to depict recent changes in live
cattle weights and grading percentages.)

   ** based on formula estimating lean hog equivalent of gross packer revenue


   Most of the cash business has been done for the week at $2.00 lower. Traders
are somewhat concerned over next week as packers again may not need to be
aggressive due to a number of cattle already contracted. The other concern is a
rising fear over a recession and the impact it would have on beef demand.
Cattle futures may not see much volatility Friday as the Cattle on Feed report
will be released after the close. Estimates for the report are for on feed at
101.4%, placements at 96.1% and marketings at 98%. Weekly export sales of
23,300 metric tons (mt) were 18% below the previous week. Boxed beef showed
gains with choice up $1.23 and select up $0.04. Feeder cattle continue to
struggle with steers and heifers being sold at lower prices. New contract low
closes even in the face of weaker corn prices do not bode well for the market.
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