DTN Closing Livestock Comments

Lean Hog Futures Launch Week With Ugly String of Triple-Digit Losses

John Harrington
By  John Harrington , DTN Livestock Analyst
(DTN file photo)


Feedlot action was typically limited Monday to the distribution of new showlists. Ready numbers appear to be generally larger than last week with only Nebraska showing a few less. According to the closing report, the national hog base is $0.18 lower ($70.00-$77.50, weighted average $76.43). Corn futures stumbled 5-6 cents lower, quickly surrendering most of Friday's rally thanks to the general lack of constructive news. The stock market closed higher with the Dow up 320 points and the Nasdaq in the green by 67.


After giving Friday's red-hot cash trade the briefest of salutes early Monday morning, live futures remained on the defensive through most of the session. Contracts closed 12 to 100 points lower, apparently oblivious to the towering example of packer spending late last week. In closing more than $6 under last week's 5-area steer average, spot August is really bracing for the worst kind of dog-day demand over the next 30-60 days. Beef cut-outs: lower, off $0.09 (select: $198.62) to $1.11 (choice: $206.92) with light-to-moderate demand and heavy offerings (70 loads of choice cuts, 26 loads of select cuts, 18 loads of trimmings, 24 loads of ground beef).


Steady to $2 higher. Look for a typically slow Tuesday with both bids and asking prices poorly defined.


At the conclusion of a fairly choppy trading session, feeder issues settled 15 to 75 points lower. Besides the failure of live contracts to be inspired by sharply higher feedlot sales, feeder paper received very little support from Monday's break in the corn market. On estimated receipts of 8,200 head (up from 2,026 last week and 5,329 in 2017), Oklahoma City sold feeder steers and heifers mostly $1-$4 higher. Calves weighing between 550-600 pounds were marked $2 higher. CME feeder index 07/05: $146.48, up $1.33.


Lean hog futures closed sharply lower in the first six contracts (i.e., off 115 to 265 lower), torpedoed by predictions of record pork production at least over the next several quarters and justifiable worries that demand would be insufficient to minimize price demand in the months ahead. Carcass value closed slightly lower with stronger processing items and ribs overshadowed by weakness in fresh cuts and picnics. Pork cut-out: $85.52, off $0.77. CME cash lean index for 07/05: $82.11, off $0.13 (DTN Projected lean index for 07/06: $81.92, off $0.19).


Steady/weak. Cash business in the morning will probably start out with a softer undertone.

John A. Harrington can be reached at john.harrington@dtn.com


John Harrington