Latest USDA Hog Data to Pressure Lean Hog Futures Early this Week

30 September 2013, at 11:58pm

US - Last Friday's USDA quarterly hogs and pigs report is deemed bearish by traders, which should seriously pressure hog futures prices early this week.

Most categories in Friday's USDA data were higher than expected. The U.S. hog inventory as of September 1, at 68.360 million head, is surprisingly 188,000 head higher than a year-ago. U.S. hog numbers were expected by traders to be around 1 million head fewer than year-ago.

The larger hog numbers were due to a higher-than-expected summer pig crop and a continued rise in the number of pigs per litter.

The bigger-than-expected market hog inventory suggests slaughter will run around one per cent above year-ago through the first quarter of next year.

Based on the pre-report estimates, traders were anticipating U.S. hog slaughter to be one per cent below year-ago levels through that timeframe. U.S. hog farrowing intentions for fall and winter showed producers plan to expand their hog herds.