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DTN Early Word Opening Livestock       04/09 06:35
   Traders Prepare for Long Holiday Weekend

   With futures markets closed Friday ahead of the Easter weekend, additional
late-week market adjustments are likely as traders not only focus on recent
gains, but the uncertainty in the economy and virus cases over the upcoming

By Rick Kment
DTN Analyst

Cattle: Steady to Lower   Futures: Mixed   Live Equiv $145.40 -3.60*
Hogs:   Steady            Futures: Mixed   Lean Equiv $ 56.33 -3.32**

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


   Additional cash cattle trade developed Wednesday, with prices generally
steady with the limited Tuesday trade. It appears that without a major
adjustment in futures trade over the next couple of days, the recent levels may
set the tone for the week. With futures trade closed Friday, both sides are
likely to wrap up cash market deals Thursday so they aren't uncovered, in the
event that something major changes over the weekend to impact overall cash
market or widespread economic levels. Live cash cattle trade is 105 per cwt,
generally $4 per cwt lower than last week, while steady with early-week
activity. Dressed trade is $6 per cwt lower than last week at $168 per cwt.
Overall cattle numbers sold through the week may remain generally light as
limited overall production is likely to be seen in the upcoming days and weeks.
Futures trade is expected to remain mixed Thursday. Although the strong upward
surge this week is helping to spark underlying bullish expectations, the
overshadowing uncertainty about beef demand through the next few weeks remains
a major concern that could limit additional strong upward market shifts in the
near future. Additional end-of-week position squaring is likely on Thursday as
the overall focus on covering positions ahead of the long weekend may have more
emphasis at this time than traditionally seen during the Easter weekend.
Thursday slaughter is expected at 108,000 head.
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