LIVESTOCK-Hog futures hit their highest level since April 22
CHICAGO, May 26 (Reuters) – CME Group hog futures rose to
their highest level in more than a month on Thursday, supported
by strong exports and concerns about a slowing slaughter,
Cattle futures ended the trading day close to unchanged.
The U.S. Agriculture Department on Thursday morning said
that export sales of pork totaled 36,800 tonnes in the week
ended May 19, up 52% from a week earlier.
Traders said that demand could pick up further as China
looks to end some COVID-19 lockdowns.
At the same time, supplies could be tighter as the slaughter
has slowed ahead of the U.S. Memorial Day holiday.
The nearby June hogs contract rose 2.05 cents to
111.1 cents per pound. The contract peaked at 111.6 cents, the
highest on a continuous basis for the front-month contract
since April 22.
Most-active July hog futures gained 3.875 cents to
111.825 cents per pound.
June hogs rose above their 40-day moving average, while the
July contract topped its 30-day and 100-day moving averages.
Hog slaughter so far this week has totalled 1.884 million
head, down 15,000 from a week earlier and 47,000 head lower than
a year ago.
CME June live cattle edged up 0.1 cent to settle at
132.4 cents per pound, while the most-active August live cattle
gained 0.075 cent to 132.6 cents per pound.
CME August feeder cattle fell 1.275 cents to 167.95
cents per pound.
Beef export sales fell to 20,000 tonnes from 23,300 tonnes.
Prices for choice cuts of boxed beef were reported at
$263.97 per cwt on Thursday afternoon, up $1.04 from a day
earlier, while select cuts rose to $244.43 from $244.06 per cwt,
according to USDA data.
(Reporting by Mark Weinraub; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)