US hog markets end higher - CME

Cattle futures sink to May lows
calendar icon 8 November 2023
clock icon 2 minute read

US cattle futures sank to their lowest prices since May on Tuesday on fund liquidation and profit-taking, Reuters reported, citing traders.

Follow-through selling pressured the markets after losses on Monday, along with softer boxed beef prices, traders said.

The US Department of Agriculture priced choice cuts of beef at $300.38 per cwt, down $1.34 from Monday, and select cuts at $269.48 per cwt, down $0.88.

Meatpackers' demand for cattle was a little lighter than expected to start the week, traders said.

Packers slaughtered an estimated 125,000 cattle on Tuesday, steady with a week ago, the USDA said. Monday's estimated slaughter of 122,000 cattle fell short of the 125,000 head processed a week earlier.

December live cattle futures settled 2.550 cents lower at 178.775 cents per pound at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) and hit their lowest price since Oct. 26 at 178.600 cents.

February live cattle saw a bigger decline, ending down 3.550 cents at 178.425 cents and reaching their lowest price since May 30 at 177.750 cents.

CME January feeder cattle futures tumbled 5.600 cents to end at 230.825 cents per pound and touched the lowest price since May 9 at 230.200 cents.

Projections that cattle supplies will be more plentiful than previously expected early next year hung over the markets, analysts said. Larger than expected placements of cattle in US feedlots in September have boosted supply expectations.

Analysts said producers have not yet started to rebuild the nation's herd after reducing it to the smallest size in decades this year. High beef prices and economic uncertainty threaten to reduce demand for US beef, however, analysts said.

In CME's lean hog market, December futures settled 0.500 cent higher at 72.900 cents per pound and hit their highest price since Sept. 28 at 74.275 cents. The wholesale pork market weakened, as belly prices fell after surging on Monday.

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