Cattle prices remain strong on bullish COF expectations

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Corn futures closed higher on Friday. Corn futures closed up on spillover support from surging wheat prices. Firm cash markets and tightening corn supplies provided additional strength to the market. Foreign demand for U.S. corn remains bullish for prices. Export premiums for the U.S. was also strong, approaching record highs and keeping corn prices afloat. July was 10 1/2 cents higher at $6.35 1/2 and December was 8 3/4 cents higher at $5.37.

Soybean futures closed lower on Friday. Soybean futures plunged after posting gains for three consecutive days. Trading was choppy most of the day and profit taking was mostly responsible for the downward spiral in the soybean market. Weakness in the soybean oil and meal markets added additional weight to prices. However, tight global soybean supplies should ease price pressures, limiting losses. The July contract was down 33 cents at $14.05, and the November contract was down 18 1/2 cents at $12.88.

Wheat futures closed higher on Friday. Currently weather is the most important factor moving the wheat market. Wheat futures soared as warm, dry weather concerns in the U.S., Russia, and Australia continued to fuel fears of damage to wheat crops. Speculators covered their short positions in the market over weather uncertainty boosting wheat prices higher on the close. CBOT July was 37 1/2 cents higher at $6.95 1/4; KCBT July was 33 cents higher at $7.05; and MGE July was 24 3/4 cents higher at $7.92.

Cattle futures closed higher on Friday. Prices remained strong on expectations of a bullish Cattle on Feed Report. The report is expected to show a 12 percent decrease in April placements, down 1.6 million head. Movement in the cash market is expected to pick up after the release of the report but is still expected to be steady to $1 higher. Beef cutout values were up at midday, with both choice and select were increasing more than $1.June cattle futures were $1.93 higher at $119.52 and August was $2.05 higher at $121.92.

Lean hog futures closed lower on Friday. Hog futures turned lower on profit taking and lower than expected cash trade. Cash trade was expected to be steady to $1 higher but fell short. Packer margins were down for the second day leading processors to lower their bids for hogs. Hog slaughter is down 5,000 head from the previous week at 408,000 animals. The June contract was down 5 cents at $87.43, and July was down 37 cents at $88.57.



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