Cattle Futures - Live Cattle Ends Mostly Firm

US - Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle settled mostly firm Thursday on the roll by fund longs out of February into April, buying June and selling February on spreads and back-month corn-based speculative purchasing.
calendar icon 11 January 2008
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Feeder cattle closed sharply higher and most lean hog contracts posted gains while pork bellies ended lower.

February through June live cattle began the session firmer while back months lagged, which briefly reversed Wednesday's two-tiered settlement.

Spot February's bullish discount to last week's cash sales, and February and April's oversold Relative Strength Index conditions, sparked initial buying. Meanwhile, profit- taking and softer Chicago Board of Trade corn's open outcry pressured distant live cattle contracts.

Nevertheless, the board's landscape abruptly changed when February cash-related speculative buying dried up. And, subsequent Goldman roll activity out-muscled earlier forward spreading.

The Goldman roll Thursday was in its third of five days and features funds moving some of their February long positions into April. The process is tied to the Goldman Sachs Commodity Index.

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