Live cattle markets ease - CME

Lean hogs approach one-month high
calendar icon 6 September 2023
clock icon 2 minute read

Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) lean hog futures neared a one-month high on Tuesday on expectations for increased U.S. pork exports and tightening supplies, reported Reuters.

Demand for US pork is benefiting as high pig prices in Europe cause global importers to shift some business to the United States, where pig prices have been weak, analysts said. Pig prices soared to records in Europe after farmers cut output due high grain and energy costs.

"The US pork industry is literally stealing market share because of their high prices," said Dennis Smith, commodity broker for Archer Financial Services in Chicago.

Most-active October lean hog futures ended up 0.125 cent at 83.175 cents per pound after touching its highest price since Aug. 8 at 84.725 cents.

The US Department of Agriculture is slated to issue weekly export sales data on Friday, one day later than usual following the Labor Day holiday on Monday. Last week, the government reported that US pork export sales in the week ended Aug. 24 were 36,900 metric tons for 2023, up 45% from the prior four-week average.

"The exports are improving really nicely," Smith said.

Brokers added that the US herd is contracting at the same time amid increased slaughtering of sows.

The USDA quoted the wholesale pork carcass cutout at $98.87 per cwt, up $5.17, as values soared $18.06 per cwt for pork bellies.

In the feeder cattle market, October futures fell to their lowest price since Aug. 25 and ended down 0.350 cent at 254.300 cents per pound. October live cattle eased 0.200 cent to 179.950 cents per pound,

Boxed beef prices were mixed, the USDA said, with choice cuts rising 99 cents to $315.48 per cwt and select cuts slipping 75 cents to $289.54 per cwt.

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