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DTN Closing Livestock Comment 12/18 15:49
   Cattle Futures Shift Higher

   The entire cattle complex saw strong gains Tuesday, helping to spark
additional buyer activity. Hog futures continued to erode lower Tuesday.

By Rick Kment
DTN Analyst



   GENERAL COMMENTS: Cash cattle markets remained sluggish with bids and asking
prices hard to pin down in most areas. A few cattle sold in Iowa at $118 per
cwt Tuesday afternoon. But this is not even enough to establish a good market
test. Even though bids may start to become more evident midweek, it may be
Friday before active trade is seen. According to the closing report, the
national hog base is $0.58 lower compared with the Prior Day settlement
($42-$47.89, weighted average $46.58). Corn futures were higher in light
activity, with March futures 1 1/2 higher. The Dow Jones Index was 62 points
lower with Nasdaq down 16 points.
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