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CME Live Cattle Futures Options Trading

 Live Cattle Futures & Options Training Guide

Live Cattle Futures News

live cattle Futures Options Trading cme


CME Group Livestock Fundamentals (PDF)

Cattle Futures & Options Fact Card (PDF)

Self-Study Guide to Hedging with Livestock Futures & Options (PDF)

live cattle futures commodity




Live Cattle Futures Options

Live Cattle Fundamentals:

The seven major cattle producing states are Arizona, California, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, and Texas.

Cattle are usually fed corn, milo and even wheat if the price is cheap enough. The protein end of their diet usually comes from soybeans. They are also fed roughage like hay and alfalfa.

Cattle and Weather:

Weather can also be a factor in cattle prices. Very hot weather can usually results in cattle not gaining normal weight as they tend to eat less. Also, extremely cold weather causes cattle to become stressed and burn more energy to stay warm, which means less weight gain. Less weight gain equal less meat and lower prices.

Tips on Trading Cattle Futures:

  • Seasonally cattle moves higher from November to January. Prices tend to move lower from February to May.
  • The Cattle on Feed Report is normally a big market mover.
  • Mad cow disease pops up every once in a while. This can cause the market to sell off sharply. It is normally just panic selling, but if legitimate cases are reported, demand and prices can drop quickly.
  • The price of feed - corn, soybeans, wheat, etc. can also impact cattle prices. If the feed is too higher, cattle will normally be sent to market earlier and at lower weights. This tends to lower prices for cattle futures.

Contract Specifications

Contract Size 40,000 pounds (~18 metric tons)

Product Description 55% Choice, 45% Select, Yield Grade 3 live steers

Pricing Unit Cents per pound

Tick Size (minimum fluctuation) $.00025 per pound (=$10 per contract)

Daily Price Limits $.03 per pound above or below the previous day's settlement price

Trading Hours
(All times listed are Central Time)

CME Globex (Electronic Platform) MON 9:05 a.m. - FRI 1:55 p.m. Central Time

Daily trading halts 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Central Time

Last Trade Date/Time
View Calendar Last business day of the contract month, 12:00 p.m.

Contract Months View Listings Feb, Apr, Jun, Aug, Oct, Dec

Settlement Procedure Daily Livestock Settlement Procedure (PDF)

Final Live Cattle Futures Settlement Procedure (PDF)

Position Limits Non-Spot: 6,300 contracts in any contract month

Spot: 450/300 contracts

All months combined: n/a

See CME Rule: 10102.E  

Ticker Symbol

View Vendor Codes CME Globex (Electronic Platform) LE

Rulebook Chapter 101 

Exchange Rule These contracts are listed with, and subject to, the rules and regulations of CME.

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