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DTN Early Word Opening Livestock       12/13 06:33
   Hog Futures Look for Additional End of the Week Trade News

   With all of the talk over the last week about trade negotiators getting
"closer" to a deal, there remains anticipation Friday morning that some action
may be seen before the weekend. This is keeping futures on edge.

By Rick Kment
DTN Analyst

Cattle: Steady to higher   Futures: Mixed    Live Equiv $141.68 -1.59*
Hogs:   Higher             Futures: Higher   Lean Equiv $ 86.63 -1.53**

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


   Light-to-moderate trade developed across the South Thursday afternoon with
prices at $119 per cwt. Although there may be some additional cash sales
trickling into the market Friday, the tone of the market is expected to have
been set, with prices fully steady with last week's price levels. The inability
to command higher cash prices in the South appears to be a moderate
disappointment to the futures market, which pulled back from early Thursday
support. But at the same time, the steady money should not come as a
significant surprise as ample market-ready cattle continues to move to market
and packers are attempting to stabilize margins, which have tumbled over the
last couple of weeks. Northern trade still needs to develop with only a handful
of sales developed Thursday, and not likely enough trade to establish a good
trend. This may still allow for late-day activity, although it is likely that
cash markets may hover around the steady range. Futures trade is expected mixed
to moderately lower early Friday morning with continued weakness in beef values
starting to weigh on nearby and long-term futures trade. Although anticipation
for tighter supplies through the first quarter of 2020 still remain the main
focus of cattle trade, beef values have to regain support in order to keep
prices strong. Friday slaughter runs are expected at 120,000 head.
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