Cattle Futures - Live Cattle Flat-Firm

US - CME live cattle settled flat to firm on cash ideas for this week that offered underlying spot-February support, spreaders who bought June and sold April and August, and CBOT corn's run up.
calendar icon 20 February 2008
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Beef futures dipped on the open as traders clung to the sidelines to gauge market direction. Also, cash caution for this week and jitters before Friday's USDA monthly cattle-on-feed report weighed on futures at the start.

Furthermore, some in the pit were anxious to see how live cattle would respond to news over the weekend that around 143 million pounds of suspect beef was recalled.

Floor-consensus was that last weekend's beef recall was a non-event because product that was removed from shelves was replaced with fresh meat. Additionally, the recall covered meat that was produced in February 2006, which means a lot of that beef has already been consumed, a broker said.

Live cattle contracts quickly snapped back with the help of short covering and fund buying that emerged after April punched through first-level technical resistance.

Meanwhile, deep-deferred cattle months inched upward as rising CBOT corn futures motivated speculative cattle longs.

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