Trade talks with China boost US pork futures

Chicago Mercantile Exchange lean hog futures jumped on Tuesday as expectations rose for China to increase pork imports from the United States, traders said.

by Emily Houghton
16 September 2019, at 10:00am

China, the world's top pork consumer, is expected to buy more American agricultural products in hopes of a better trade deal with Washington, the South China Morning Post reported, citing a source.

Reuters reports that senior White House adviser tamped down expectations for the next round of U.S.-China trade talks. But Chinese purchases of U.S. pork would be welcome by American farmers and exporters as the countries' trade war has impeded U.S. meat exports for more than a year.

"That is the only story for the hogs today," said Rich Nelson, chief strategist for Illinois-based broker Allendale.

CME October lean hogs closed 0.125 cent higher at 62.725 cents per pound, after dropping to a one-year low last week. December hogs advanced 1.825 cents to 61.775 cents.

China is widely expected to need more imported meat as it struggles with African swine fever. Beijing on Tuesday reported a new case in the northwestern region of Ningxia.

"China will have to come back to the U.S. pork market regardless of the trade talks by the fourth quarter," Nelson said.