Large commodity funds reduced their net long live cattle futures position for the third straight week during the week ended Tuesday as cash-connected traders continue to hold their net short positions relatively stable.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission Friday reported that for the week ended Tuesday, managed money, a term for those large commodity funds, held a net long live cattle position of 18,959 contracts, down 1,313, or 6.48%, from 20,272 the previous week. This is their lowest net long position since the week ended Feb. 23 when it was 15,865.
At the same time, commercial traders, those who theoretically could make or take delivery of a futures contract, trimmed their net short position to 63,795 contracts from 64,320, a decline of 525, or 0.82%. Commercials have held their net short position near this level for three weeks.
The CFTC said managed money arrived at their new net long live cattle position by liquidating 5,414 long positions and covering 4,101 short positions while unwinding 2,029 spread positions. This left them in control of 22.9% of total long open interest and 16.0% of total short open interest.
Commercial traders got to their new position by adding 1,940 new long positions and 1,415 new short positions to leave they representing 16.6% of total long open interest and 39.9% of total short open interest.
Total live cattle open interest for the week declined 2,930 contracts, or 1.06%, to 274,357 contracts from 277,287, the CME Group said on its Website.
During the latest CFTC week, the most-active Jun live cattle futures contract rose sharply to a high of $123.85 per cwt on Tuesday before closing at $123.27 the same day from a close the previous week of $116.37. This was a gain of $6.90, or 5.93%.
FUNDS KEEP LIQUIDATING CORN
Meanwhile, managed money continues to liquidate its net long corn position, taking it down 27,744 contracts, or 43.8%, to 35,554 from 63,298 the previous week. This was the second straight cut in managed money’s net long position since peaking at 74,653 contracts the week ended April 26.
During the latest week, commercial traders also cut their net short positions sharply, going to 342,129 contracts from 369,654 a decline of 27,525, or 7.45%, the CFTC said.
The CFTC also said managed money arrived at its new corn position by liquidating 21,856 long positions and adding 5,888 new short positions while unwinding 11,986 spreads. This left them representing 14.9% of total long open interest and 12.2% of total short open interest.
Commercial traders got to their new corn position by liquidating 2,981 long positions and covering 30,506 shorts. This left them in control of 24.9% of total long open interest and 50.7% of total short open interest.
Total corn open interest for the week declined 39,111, or 2.87%, to 1.325 million contracts from 1.364 million the previous week, the CME Group said.
During the latest CFTC week, the most-active Jul corn futures contract fell to a swing low of $3.68 a bushel from a high the previous week of $3.95 before rebounding sharply on Tuesday, May 10, to close at $3.81 for a net gain of $0.01 1/4 from $3.79 ¾ the previous week.
CASH CATTLE MARKET UP $5 TO $6
Cash cattle markets last week were $5 to $6 per cwt higher at $132 to $134 on a live basis. Dressed-basis prices were up $7 to $9 at around $207.
The USDA’s choice cutout Friday was sharply higher at $218.56 per cwt, up $4.10, while select was up $0.71 at $205.95. The choice/select spread widened to $12.61 from $9.22 with 79 loads of fabricated product sold into the spot market.
The CME Feeder Cattle Index for the seven days ended Thursday was $146.21 per cwt, up $0.61. This compares with the May settlement Friday of $147.05, down $0.77.