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CME update: lean hogs strengthen as slaughter pace ramps up

US lean hog futures closed higher on 21 July as slaughter pace returns to pre-COVID-19 levels, but consumer demand remains shaky.

22 July 2020, at 9:13am

Despite Tuesday’s rally, Reuters reports that traders are concerned about the sporadic economic reopening of the United States. Multiple states are reporting spates of COVID-19 infections, leading traders like Kirk Dawson of Allendale Inc to worry that consumer demand for beef and pork will remain uneven despite the ramped-up slaughter pace.

"They're nervous about putting a lot of premium in the market because of demand uncertainty," said Dawson.

CME lean hog futures gained on 21 July, with August futures settling up 1.075 cents at 51.475 cents per pound.

USDA estimated 478,000 hogs were slaughtered on Tuesday, up from 476,000 head on the same day a year ago.

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