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USDA Meat Data a Mixed Bag for Livestock Futures

ANALYSIS - USDA's Cold Storage report Thursday afternoon is deemed neutral for lean hog futures and bearish for cattle futures.
calendar icon 1 November 2013
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USDA's Cold Storage report Thursday afternoon is deemed bearish for cattle futures and neutral for lean hog futures.

Frozen beef stocks at the end of September were 445.047 million pounds, which is around 13 million pounds higher than traders expected. End-September frozen pork stocks were at 566.367 million pounds, which is slightly above the average trade guess.

However, total U.S. pork stocks were 10% lower than year-ago levels at the end of September.

Meanwhile, USDA Cattle-on-Feed report is being called mildly bullish for cattle futures markets.

The report, which was delayed from earlier this month, showed cattle on feed at 92% of levels seen one year ago, which is slightly below trade expectations. Cattle marketings, at 106% of year-ago levels was also were deemed positive. Placement of cattle on feed were slightly above trade expectations, at 101% of year-ago.

While the latest cattle-on-feed report is likely to support live cattle futures Friday, focus is on the U.S. cash cattle market, which has traded at record-high levels the past couple weeks.

Sarah Mikesell

Editor

Sarah Mikesell grew up on a five-generation family farming operation in Ohio, USA, where her family still farms. She feels extraordinarily lucky to get to do what she loves - write about livestock and crop agriculture. You can find her on Twitter or LinkedIn.