Managed money, or large commodity investment funds, boosted their net long live cattle futures positions to 29,725 contracts during the week ended Tuesday, their largest position since the week ended Aug. 23 when it dipped to 40,932.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s weekly Commitments of Traders report Friday also said managed money’s new net long cattle position was up 8,565, or 40.5%, from the previous week’s position of 21,160 contracts.
Commercial traders, those who actually own or handle the cattle, had a new net short position of 62,313 contracts, up 1,944, or 3.22%, from 60,369 the previous week.
The CFTC said managed money arrived at its new position by adding 1,821 new long positions and covering 6,744 short positions while unwinding 6,744 spreads. This left them representing 29.2% of total long open interest and 18.3% of total short open interest.
Commercials got to their new net short position by adding 2,650 long positions and 4,594 short positions, leaving them in control of 15.4% of total long open interest and 38.2% of total short open interest.
The CME Group said total live cattle open interest during the CFTC week rose 4,988 contracts, or 1.86%, to 273,453 contracts from 268,465 the previous week.
During the week, the most-active Dec cattle futures contract rocketed higher to close at $103.90 per cwt from $99.22, leaving to gaps on daily bar charts. Since then, the contract has inched up to a swing high of $105.95 on Friday before closing at $104.35.
FUNDS ADD TO CORN POSITION
During the same reporting week, managed money added to its net short corn position by 8,660 contracts, or 16.7%, going to 60,646 contracts from 51,986, ending a three-week decline.
At the same time, commercial traders extended their net short corn position by 10,349 contracts, or 4.15%, to 259,596 from 249,247 the previous week, the CFTC said.
Managed money arrived at its new net short corn position by liquidating 6,595 long positions and adding 2,065 shorts while taking on 626 new spread positions. This left them representing 14.8% of total long open interest and 19.3% of total short open interest.
Commercials got to their new position by liquidating 2,109 long positions and adding 8,240 shorts, leaving them in control of 23.1% of total long open interest and 42.5% of total short open interest.
The CME Group said total corn open interest for the week rose to 1.336 million contracts from 1.317 million, a gain of 19,339, or 1.47%.
During the week, the most-active Dec contract rose to a swing high of $3.59 ¼ from the previous Tuesday’s settlement of $3.53 ¾ before ending at $3.49 ¼. The contract has since moved up to challenge the latest high with a top at $3.58 ½ on Thursday before giving up some value on Friday.
CASH CATTLE MARKETS ACTIVE
Cash cattle markets Friday were very active with trading at $105 per cwt on a live basis and $164 dressed. This follows light action earlier in the week at $102 to $104 live and trade last week at $98 to $102 live and $154 dressed.
There were reports of trading going into Friday evening.
The USDA’s choice cutout Friday was $1.57 per cwt higher at $183.11, while select was up $1.35 at $170.16. The choice/select spread widened to $12.95 from $12.73 with 73 loads of fabricated product sold into the spot market.
The CME Feeder Cattle Index for the seven days ended Thursday was $121.84 per cwt, up $0.94. This compares with Friday’s Nov $121.55, down $2.32.