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Live cattle futures hit over 7-year high on strong cash market

By Mark Weinraub

CHICAGO, Oct 18 (Reuters) - Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle contracts rose on Tuesday and the front-month contract hit its highest in more than seven years on strength in the cash market, traders said.

Hog futures were also firm, with chart-based buying after contracts broke through key technical resistance points on Monday.

CME December lean hog futures rose 1.525 cents to settle at 86.475 cents per lb, peaking at their highest since Sept. 22 during the session. The contract found technical support at its 200-day moving average.

Hog futures have risen in four of the last five sessions.

The average pork packer margin rose by $3.65 to $19.20 per head on Tuesday, according to livestock marketing advisory service HedgersEdge.com LLC.

CME December live cattle gained a cent to 149.775 cents per lb, rising above its 40-day and 50-day moving averages.

Spot October live cattle contract gained 0.6 cent to 148.475 cents per lb. The contract peaked at 148.5 cents, the highest on a continuous basis for the front-month contract since Aug. 2015.

In the U.S. wholesale beef market, choice cuts rose $2.64 to $250.78 per hundredweight (cwt). Select cuts were $1.67 higher at $221.28 per cwt, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

CME November feeder cattle ended up 1.425 cent at 177.825 cents per lb. (Reporting by Mark Weinraub; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)

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