Large commodity investment funds, known as managed money, continued to buy live cattle futures in the week ended Tuesday, even though the most-active Oct contract moved lower.
The data came from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s weekly Commitments of Traders report Friday.
Managed money’s new collective net long live cattle position amounted to 60,546 contracts, up 4,274, or 7.60%, from 56,272 a week earlier. It was their sixth straight week of taking on a larger net long cattle position and was their largest long position since Jan. 28 when it was long by 67,128 contracts.
At the same time, commercial traders, those who own the cattle and theoretically could make or take delivery of a futures contract, extended their collective net short position to 140,018 contracts, up 3,523, or 2.58%, from 136,495 a week earlier. This took them to their largest short cattle position since Feb. 4 when it was short by 147,112 contracts.
The CFTC said managed money arrived at their new cattle position by adding 2,856 long positions, covering 1,418 short positions and putting on 418 spread positions. This left their long position representing 26.2% of total long open interest, 5.9% of total short open interest and 12.5% of total spread open interest.
Commercials got to where they were Tuesday by liquidating 682 long positions and adding 2,841 short positions, making their short position representing 7.6% of total long open interest and 54.6% of total short open interest.
The CME Group said total live cattle open interest Tuesday stood at 298,185 contracts, up 7,113, or 2.44%, from 291,072 a week earlier.
The CME Group also said the most-active Oct futures contract declined in value during the CFTC week to close Tuesday at $108.77 per cwt, compared with $109.87 a week earlier.
FUNDS BUY MORE CORN
The CFTC reported Friday that managed money continued to buy corn futures, although they continued to hold a net short position. However, commercials continued to sell and held a larger net short position as of Tuesday.
Managed money’s new Chicago corn futures position was net short by 71,166 contracts, down 56,945, or 44.4%, from 128,111 a week earlier. It was their smallest net short position since March 10 when it was short by 52,348 contracts.
Commercials’ new short corn position Tuesday stood at 152,026 contracts, up 61,228, or 67.4%, from 90,798 a week earlier. It was their largest net short position since March 24 when it was short by 164,048 contracts.
The CFTC said managed money arrived at their new corn position by liquidating 939 long positions, covering 57,884 short positions and unwinding 19,691 spread positions. This left them holding 12.9% of total long open interest, 18.0% of total short open interest and 11.6% of total spread open interest.
Commercials got to where they were by liquidating 39,452 long positions and adding 21,776 short positions, for 32.0% of long open interest and 42.7% of short.
CATTLE, BEEF RECAP
Fed cattle trading was reported in the Plains last week at $105 to $106 per cwt on a live basis, steady to down $1 from the previous week, and at $167 dressed, down $1 to $5.
The USDA choice cutout Friday was down $2.14 per cwt at $229.40, while select was up $0.60 at $214.86. The choice/select spread narrowed to $14.54 from $17.28 with 84 loads of fabricated product sold into the spot market.
No steer or heifer contracts were tendered for delivery Friday against the Aug live cattle futures contract.
The CME Feeder Cattle Index for the seven days ended Thursday was at $141.56 per cwt, down $1.46. This compares with Friday’s Sep contract settlement of $140.02 per cwt, down $1.20.