That's two sessions in a row that the cattle markets have failed miserably, this time down $2.82 in nearby live cattle and as much as $5.00 in the feeders and on huge trade volume. The technical picture continues to deteriorate and suddenly there is some real debate about whether this market is on the fast track towards the lows established a month ago. We did see some cash cattle trade develop in the North yesterday, which I think contributed to the futures weakness - $205-208 dressed and $130 live in the North, compared to a $210 dressed market there last week. I've seen no trade in the South, but those steady-higher early week expectations have been dashed with something in the $134-135 area now more realistic, and probably not on very large trade volume. Month of Sep beef import/export data released yesterday wasn't very positive either. Monthly exports were down 25% vs last year, while imports were up 13%. The U.S. has remained a net beef importer for 19 consecutive months. Exports as a % of total production was just 7.9%, the smallest % of any month in five years!
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