US July lean hog futures settle up - CME

Cattle futures extend rally
calendar icon 5 June 2023
clock icon 2 minute read

Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) live cattle futures extended their run of life-of-contract highs on Friday, supported by a jump in cash cattle prices this week along with rising beef prices, Reuters reported, citing traders.

Benchmark CME August live cattle futures settled up 0.525 cent at 172.900 cents per pound after posting a contract high at 174.250 cents. August feeder cattle finished up 0.250 cent at 241.900 cents per pound after notching a contract high at 243.800 cents.

Cattle futures rallied to keep pace with cash prices after market-ready cattle changed hands in Texas and Kansas this week as high as $180 per hundredweight (cwt), up to $9 higher than last week's trades.

After Monday's holiday, meat packers had a short week in which to buy cattle for a full week of slaughter next week, a factor that may have supported cash prices. Some traders also noted heavy rains and flooding this week in the Texas Panhandle that may have limited the number of cattle available from feedlots.

"You get a lot of mud on the animals, which hurts performance," said Terry Linn, analyst with Linn & Associates in Chicago.

In the wholesale beef market, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) priced choice cuts late Friday at $309.93 per cwt, up $3.49 from Thursday and the highest since May 1, and prices for select cuts jumped $4.61 to $290.93 per cwt.

Hog futures followed the firm trend in cattle, closing higher and extending their rebound from contract lows set last week. CME July lean hog futures settled up 2.600 cents Friday at 84.650 cents per pound.

Wholesale pork prices retreated from Thursday's 2-1/2-month high, with the carcass cutout down 96 cents late Friday at $84.72 per cwt, according to USDA data.

The USDA reported export sales of US pork in the week ended May 25 at 22,600 tonnes, down 36% from the prior four-week average. Weekly beef export sales totaled 18,100 tonnes, steady with the prior four-week average.

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