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DTN Early Word Opening Livestock       09/02 06:00
   Cattle Futures to Return from Holiday with Firm Undertone

   Live and feeder cattle contracts should open this morning moderately higher,
supported by follow-through buying and recent cash premiums. At the same time,
lean hog futures seem set to begin on a firm note thanks to ideas that late
summer markets have become oversold.

By John Harrington
DTN Analyst

Cattle:  Steady-$2 HR  Futures: 10-30 HR  Live Equiv $168.88 - 0.33*
Hogs:    Steady-$1 HR  Futures: 10-30 HR  Lean Equiv $110.17 + 0.92**
* based on formula estimating live cattle equivalent of gross packer revenue
** based on formula estimating lean hog equivalent of gross packer revenue


   Sensing that August ended on a better note than it began, cattle feeders
will not hesitate to price showlists higher this morning, probably around
$158-159 in the South and $248-250 in the North. But with beef cut-outs still
sliding lower the last time they looked, packers will no doubt swallow hard in
the face of such renewed bullishness. Of course, activity today will be limited
to the distribution of showlists. Ready numbers should be about steady with
last week possibly some smaller. Packers should return from Labor Day short
bought but nervous about narrowing margins. Needless to say, both sides will be
anxious to gather news of retail clearance of the long weekend. Significant
trade volume will probably be delayed until Thursday or Friday. Live and feeder
futures appear ready to open moderately higher, boosted by follow-through
buying interest and the premium status of cash markets.
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