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DTN Early Word Opening Livestock       12/18 05:56
   Meat Futures Seem Staged for Mixed Opening

   Look for cattle futures to open on a mixed basis thanks to a combination of
residual selling and short-covering. Lean hog contracts should also with uneven
price action as traders position further ahead of the Dec. 1 Hogs & Pigs report
scheduled for Thursday.

By John Harrington
DTN Analyst



Cattle: Steady         Futures: Mixed     Live Equiv: $140.62  + .87*
Hogs:   Steady-$1 LR   Futures: Mixed     Lean Equiv: $ 76.65  + .16**

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

GENERAL COMMENTS:

   Cattle buyers and sellers would probably like to conclude business this week
as soon as possible given the holiday schedule ahead. Yet that's not likely to
mean an active Tuesday. Bids and asking prices should remain largely hidden
until midweek. Smaller packer appetites may simply be offset by smaller feedlot
offerings. Processing margins remain very solid, even though retail needs may
slow through the end of the year. Live and feeder futures should open Tuesday
on a mixed basis in slow pre-cash, pre-on feed volume.
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