Pit-traded live cattle and feeder cattle futures closed higher as an early bounce from contract lows on Thursday held.
Cash prices this week were down from last week, but futures traders felt Thursday's futures losses were overdone and repurchased previously sold contracts early Friday, getting the markets back into a more balanced position.
Once cash and futures were in balance, traders were content to keep them within a narrow trading range for the rest of the session. Many wanted to see what would happen with the weather over the weekend.
With a winter storm approaching the Plains, traders weren't willing to take prices back down again as the close of the pit session approached, traders said. Cattle growth rates can be hindered by harsh conditions.
Prices received an early boost from a better-than-expected unemployment report, traders and brokers said. The report helped to stimulate stock prices, which brought in some of the position repurchasing in the cattle and feeder cattle markets.
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