Feb 6 (Reuters) - Chicago Mercantile Exchange lean hogs turned higher Friday, ignited by short-covering following futures’ slump to a six-year low on Thursday, traders said.
* At 8:54 a.m. CST (1454 GMT), lean hogs February was 0.775 cent higher at 64.050 cents per lb, and April rose 1.725 cents to 68.000 cents.
* February lean hogs, which will expire on Feb. 13, benefited from its discount to CME’s hog index for Feb. 4 at 68.88 cents.
* Before Friday’s open, CME lean hogs had a Relative Strength Index (RSI) of 23. An RSI below 30 suggests the market is technically oversold and subject to an upward correction.
* Still, some investors are skeptical about Friday’s rally given ongoing congestion on the West Coast that exerted recent price pressure on market-ready, or cash, hogs and pork at wholesale.
* Packers are reluctant to spend more for hogs if they are unable to sell significant amounts of meat domestically and abroad, an analyst said.
* Hogs are readily available as farmers aggressively send them to market to clear space for more pigs waiting to be fattened, he said.
* LIVE CATTLE February was up 0.825 cent per lb to 154.250 cents, and April 1.625 cents higher at 149.650 cents.
* CME live cattle climbed on bargain hunting and futures’ discounts to this week’s cash prices, traders said.
* So far, cash cattle in Kansas and Texas moved at $160 per cwt, steady to up $1.50 from last week’s overall sales in the U.S. Plains, said feedlot sources.
* Remaining cash bids stood at $160 per cwt against $162 asking prices, they said.
* Bouts of wintry weather in parts of the Plains slowed down cattle weight gains, which might force short-bought packers to spend more for supplies, traders and analysts said.
* Other processors may keep cash prices steady with last week given their unprofitable margins and more animals for sale, they said.
* FEEDER CATTLE - March was up 2.800 cents to 198.450 cents per lb, and April climbed 2.650 cents to 198.500 cents.
* CME feeder cattle drew support from the upswing in live cattle futures. (Reporting by Theopolis Waters in Chicago, Editing by W Simon)