Cattle futures were down on Wednesday on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange after the cost of beef at wholesale markets was cut to accelerate retail buying as Labor Day approaches.
August live cattle closed 1.400 cents per pound lower at 148.225, while October ended 1.125 cents lower at 146.550 cents. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, choice wholesale beef price dropped to $256.88 on Wednesday, $1.27 per cwt lower than Tuesday. Select beef also saw a loss of $3.58 to $249.55.
Meanwhile, September feeder futures gained 0.22 cents to 213.77 cents/pound and November futures rose 0.22 to 212.22, reports AG Professional.
R.J. O'Brien, floor manager Jim Brooks, said, "August led the way down, which is amazing to me given its discount to cash prices," according to Reuters.
The market may receive support on Thursday from the possibility that futures may have already accounted for the bulk of this week's fundamental bearishness.
A small number of cash cattle in Nebraska traded $5 lower from the previous week on Wednesday at $155. However, cattle farmers in the southern Plains refused to accept the lower prices, as they believe they'll be able to extract higher payments from packers, which, despite Wednesday's losses, possibly helped CME futures last night, reports AG Professional.
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