After rallying Wednesday because some areas would be turning colder by the weekend, prices seemed to be having second thoughts about the situation Thursday. The result was a cash market resembling the ones that ended last week and began this week: a mixture of moderately higher and lower numbers that was dominated by declines.
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While futures slipped a few cents Wednesday, cash prices managed gains of 5-20 cents mainly on the continuing wide gap between current cash and November futures and the cool temperatures and slightly stronger demand in the Midwest and Northeast market areas.
Despite the sharp change in market direction the past twotrading days, with prices falling as much as 12 cents at somepoints Monday, there was no consensus on whether this is thebeginning of a lengthy slide or just a breather before anothersurge upward.