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Cattle Commentary: Cattle futures were both sides of unchanged today, starting the morning session with an attempted breakout which led to an ultimate failure by the end of the day. February live cattle futures finished down .85 at 122.10, trading in a range of 1.525 on the session. As mentioned yesterday, funds are starting to roll some and volume is picking up in April, which finished down .725 at 123.65. March feeders finished the day down 1.725 at 145.10, trading in a range of 3.525. spreads are wide with bids at 121 and offers at 126. There was a small reginal that payed 125 in the north today, that is two over the bulk of last week’s trade. As mentioned in yesterday’s report, futures prices are opportunistic for hedgers and speculators. Boxed beef was up again today.
PM Boxed Beef – Choice – Select
Current Cutout Values: – 208.67 – 200.86
Change from prior day: – .05 – 1.70
Choice/Select spread: – 7.81
Live Cattle (February)
February live cattle attempted to break out of our major resistance pocket from 123.35-123.80 for the third session in a row. If you’ve been reading our reports you know that this represents a key Fibonacci retracement from the August lows to November highs, the 50-day moving average, and more importantly a breakout point from October 24th and a breakdown point from December 1st. The inability to breakout led to long liquidation from funds which opens the door to our target of 120.20-120.70. This represents the middle of the range from the August lows to the November highs, as well as the 100-day moving average. If this holds it will set the bulls up in a good spot, marking higher lows with potential higher highs to follow.
Resistance: 123.35-123.80****, 126.65**, 131.95**
Support: 120.20-120.70**, 119.85***, 118.05-118.15**
Feeder Cattle (March)
March feeder cattle looked destined to test resistance from 149.10-149.40 but ran out of gas in the afternoon, posting a high of 148.55. The inability to sustain momentum gave funds an excellent opportunity to liquidate some long positions after climbing 9.95 in the last 7 sessions. We think this liquidation could continue to fill the gap from 143.05-143.55. that pocket needs to hold on a closing basis to encourage a firm trade going forward. A failure could lead to a retest of the 200-day moving average which now comes in just shy of 140.
Resistance: 146.45-146.95**, 149.10-149.40***, 153.175-154.05***
Support: 143.05-143.55***, 139.85**, 138.30-138.75****
Lean Hog Commentary & Technicals
Lean hog futures traded both sides of unchanged today, with February futures finishing up .45 at 71.50, trading in a range of .975. Prices remain at the top end of the range with first resistance coming in from 72.25-72.45, above that is contract highs at 73.30. We continue to believe that there is limited near term value at these prices and a failure to breakout will lead to long liquidation. A breakdown and close below support from 70.20-70.30 opens the door to accelerated selling, pressing prices back to the bottom end of the range which comes in from 66.70-67.05. This pocket represents the middle of the range from the August lows to the November highs, as well as the 200-day moving average. A hair above that is the 100-day moving average which comes in at 67.40
Resistance: 72.25-72.45***, 73.30****, 74.50-75**
Support: 70.20-70.30**, 68.30-68.475***, 66.70-67.05****
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