April 13, 2018 / 9:00 PM / 9 days ago

LIVESTOCK-CME live cattle futures settle mixed, hogs firmer

CHICAGO, April 13 (Reuters) - Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle April futures on Friday drew support from late-week cash price strength, while profit-taking weighed on the June contract, said traders.

Short-covering and technical buying underpinned deep-deferred trading months, they said.

April live cattle closed 1.325 cents per pound higher at 117.075 cents. June ended down 0.050 cent to 103.650 cents.

On Friday packers in Kansas and Nebraska paid $120 to $122 per cwt for slaughter-ready, or cash, cattle that last week brought $114 to $119. Earlier this week, a small number of cash cattle in the U.S. Plains fetched $116 to $118.

Severe winter-like weather in the northern Plains, and already tight supplies in Nebraska, forced processors to compete for animals, a feedlot source said.

“It’s (storm) going to whack feedyards and hog farms from Nebraska to Iowa,” a feedlot manager said.

However, expectations for increased supplies in the coming months limited deferred-month live cattle market advances, said analysts and traders.

CME feeder cattle drew support from firmer back-month live cattle contracts.

April closed up 0.50 cent per pound at 139.375 cents.

HOGS GAIN MODESTLY

Except for CME April hog futures, which expired at noon CDT (1700 GMT), other contracts rose following recent cash price gains and Friday’s firmer wholesale pork values, said traders.

Some packers increased bids for hogs as heavy snow and cold temperatures enter parts of Iowa and Minnesota, which could delay livestock delivery to packing plants in the region.

“We’re hearing that a few packers are trying to fill up their pens before the storm hits, and at least one plant may not kill on Saturday,” a Midwest hog dealer said.

April hogs settled down 0.475 cent per pound at 53.825 cents, nearly in line with CME’s two-day hog index for April 11 at 52.97 cents.

May closed up 0.375 cent at 69.700 cents. Most actively traded June ended 0.400 cent higher at 77.650 cents. (Reporting by Theopolis Waters Editing by Phil Berlowitz )

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