Large commodity investment firms, called managed money in the trade, held their collective net long live cattle futures position nearly flat during the week ended Tuesday as hedgers increased their net short position.
The data came from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s weekly Commitments of Traders report Friday.
Managed money’s new net long live cattle position totaled 16,806 contracts, down 174, or 1.02%, from 16,980 a week earlier. These traders have kept a relatively flat net position since mid-March although transitioning from net short to net long on April 14.
During the latest CFTC reporting week, commercial traders, those hedgers who own the cattle and theoretically could make or take delivery of a futures contract, turned sellers after a two-week short-covering spree and extended their net short cattle position. Their new short position amounted to 104,879 contracts, up 778, or 0.75%, from 104,101 a week earlier.
The CFTC said managed money arrived at its new net long cattle position by adding 2,147 long positions, 2,321 short positions and 1,724 new spread positions. This left their net long position representing 17.1% of total long open interest, 11.0% of total short open interest and 13.7% of total spread open interest.
Commercial traders got to their new position by liquidating 2,246 long positions and covering 1,468 short positions, leaving them in charge of 13.1% of total long open interest and 50.8% of total short open interest.
The CME Group said total live cattle open interest as of Tuesday stoo0d at 276,711 contracts, up 1,052, or 0.38%, from 275,659 a week earlier.
CME Group data also showed that the most-active Aug futures contract rose to $97.20 per cwt during the CFTC reporting week from $96.77.
FUNDS SELL CORN
Meanwhile, managed money took on a larger net short corn futures position, going to 285,942 contracts from 277,603, a gain of 8,339, or 3.00%.
Commercials extended their net long corn futures position to 35,113 contracts from 21,846 in the latest week, a gain of 13,267, or 60.7%. It was their largest net long position in more than a year.
Managed money arrived at its new net short corn position by adding 5,020 long positions, 13,359 short positions and 8,397 spread positions. This left them holding 8.7% of total long open interest, 26.5% of total short open interest and 12.8% of total spread open interest.
Commercial traders got to their new net long corn position by adding 16,553 long positions and 3,286 short positions, leaving them in charge of 35.0% of total long open interest and 32.9% of total short open interest.
The CME Group said total corn open interest as of Tuesday stood at 1.610 million contracts, up 25,724, or 1.62%, from 1.584 million a week earlier.
CME Group data showed that the most-active Sep contract declined to $3.29 a bushel from $3.34 ½.
CATTLE, BEEF RECAP
Fed cattle sold last week in the Plains at $93.50 to $98 per cwt on a live basis, down $4.50 to $7 from the previous week, and at $152 to $156 dressed, down $5 to $11.
The USDA choice cutout Friday was down $1.09 per cwt at $207.17, while select was off $1.08 at $198.85. The choice/select spread narrowed to $8.32 from $8.33 with 80 loads of fabricated product sold into the spot market.
Seventeen heifer and 26 steer contracts were tendered for delivery at zero Friday against the Jun live cattle futures contract. All were demanded.
The CME Feeder Cattle index for the seven days ended Thursday was $130.04 per cwt, up $0.22. This compares with Friday’s Aug contract settlement of $132.60, down $0.65.