Large commodity investment funds reversed their investment strategies in live cattle futures during the week ended Tuesday and took on a net longer position than the week before when it declined.
At the same time, hedgers took the opposite tack and increased their collective net short position.
The data came from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s weekly Commitments of Traders report on Friday.
FUNDS GET LONGER CATTLE
Those large commodity investment funds, known as managed money, took their net long cattle position to 78,651 contracts as of Tuesday, up 3,474, or 4.62%, from 75,177 a week earlier but very near the 78,689 of two weeks earlier.
Also as of Tuesday, hedgers, better known as commercial traders, those who own, or will own, the cattle, pushed their net short position to 160,505 contracts, up 5,753, or 3.72%, from 154,752 a week earlier and very near the 160,135 of two weeks earlier.
The CFTC said managed money arrived at their new net long cattle position by adding 2,473 long positions, covering 1,001 short positions and unwinding 3,334 spread positions. This left them in control of 28.8% of total long open interest, 5.5% of total short open interest and 11.3% of total spread open interest.
Commercials got to where they were by liquidating 1,577 long positions and adding 4,176 short positions, leaving them with 10.1% of total long open interest and 57.7% of total short open interest.
The CME Group said total live cattle open interest as of Tuesday was 337,312 contracts, up 2,433, or 0.73%, from 334,879 a week earlier.
CME Group data also showed that Jun, the most-active live cattle contract, rose during the CFTC reporting week to settle Tuesday at $122.22 per cwt, up from $120.05 a week earlier.
FUNDS TAKE LONGER CORN POSITION
CFTC data showed that, as of Tuesday, managed money had taken their collective net long Chicago corn position to 387,698 contracts, up 8,189, or 2.16%, from 379,509 a week earlier. It was their largest net long position in more than a year.
Commercials, meanwhile trimmed their collective net short corn position to 761,134 contracts from 763,441 a week earlier, a decline of 23,307, or 0.30%.
The CFTC said managed money arrived at their new corn position by adding 10,187 long positions, 1,998 short positions and unwinding 901 spread positions. This left them in control of 23.9% of total long open interest, 1.6% of total short open interest and 9.0% of total spread open interest.
Commercials got to where they were by liquidating 1,019 long positions and covering 3,326 short positions, leaving their net short position representing 24.4% of total long open interest and 68.2% of total short open interest.
CATTLE, BEEF RECAP
Fed cattle trading last week was at $116 to $120.50 per cwt on a live basis, up $1 to $4.50 from the previous week. Dressed-basis trading was at $184 to $190 per cwt, unchanged to up $5.
The USDA choice cutout Friday was up $2.88 per cwt at $252.85, while select was up $2.27 at $246.97. The choice/select spread widened to $5.88 from $5.27 with 51 loads of fabricated product and 28 loads of trimmings and grinds sold into the spot market.
The USDA reported Thursday that basis bids for corn from livestock feeding operations in the Southern Plains were unchanged to up $0.01 at $1.25 to $1.28 a bushel over the May CBOT futures contract, which settled at $5.59 3/4 a bushel, down $0.04 1/2.
The CME Feeder Cattle Index for the seven days ended Wednesday was $140.35 per cwt, up $0.44. This compares with Thursday’s Apr contract settlement of $143.87 per cwt, unchanged.