U.S. livestock: Hog futures rally as China buys pork

Cattle futures, beef cutout values lower

CME August 2021 lean hogs (candlesticks) with 20-, 50- and 100-day moving averages (pink, brown and black lines) and August 2021 live cattle (dark red open/high/low/close). (Barchart)

Chicago | Reuters — Chicago Mercantile Exchange hog futures rose three per cent on Monday, supported by rising demand as China moved to buy pork for its reserves to shore up the domestic market, traders said.

China’s state planner said on Monday that central and local governments will start buying pork for state reserves to support prices, even after prices rebounded sharply from a two-year low last week.

CME August hog futures, the most actively traded contract, ended up three cents at 102.775 cents (all figures US$).

The wholesale U.S. pork carcass cutout price rose $5.09, to $115.13, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture data.

Profit margins at pork processors weakened. Packers were facing a loss of $33.55 per head, compared with a loss of $25.19 on Friday, according to Denver-based livestock marketing advisory service HedgersEdge.com.

August live cattle futures settled 1.2 cent lower at 121.6 cents/lb. CME August feeder cattle ended down 3.2 cents at 156.35 cents/lb.

USDA quoted the choice boxed beef cutout value at $297.43/cwt, down $7.13 from Thursday, and the select cutout dropped $2.22, at $273.96/cwt.

— Reporting for Reuters by Mark Weinraub in Chicago.

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