AFTERNOON LIVESTOCK COMMENTS
John Harrington, DTN Livestock Analyst
GENERAL COMMENTS: Cattle buyers limited early week efforts to the collection of new showlists. Ready numbers appear to be mixed, somewhat larger in the North and smaller in the South. A few asking prices were suggested around $158 in the South and $250 plus in the North. According to the closing report, the Iowa hog base is 0.01 higher compared with the Prior Day settlement ($125.00-$128.50, weighted average $127.65). The corn market continued to slide lower, pressured by productive growing conditions. Most contracts finished 6-7 cents lower. U.S. stocks fell as global disapproval of Russian President Putin increased after the downing of a passenger plane in Ukraine and amid international calls for a truce in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Dow closed 48 points lower with the Nasdaq down 7.
LIVE CATTLE: Futures closed up 25 to 182. The live pit extended last week's late rally by employing further efforts of short covering and bull spreading. Clearly, last week's success in sanding over technical cracks afforded spec buyers more confidence. Although spot August closed at its highest level since, it remains a full $3 below last week's 5-area steer average. Beef cut-outs: sharply higher (choice, $250.52, up $2.07; select, $244.08, up $1.43) with moderate to fairly good demand and light to moderate offerings (70 loads of choice cuts, 48 loads of select, 10 loads of trimmings, 19 loads of ground beef).
TUESDAY'S CASH CATTLE CALL: Steady. Tuesday's cash trade should be typically quiet with bids and asking prices slow to assume sharp definition.
FEEDER CATTLE: Futures closed up 82 to 147. Feeder contracts surged sharply higher, reacting to the bullish pattern set in the live pit and a general lack of selling interest. Spot August managed to close above the top of the chart gap created on July 10. On an estimated run of 5,700 head (down from 7,035 last week and 9,245 in 2013), Oklahoma City sold steers and heifers steady to $3 higher. CME cash feeder index: 07/18: 210.88, off 3.60.