LIVESTOCK-CME hog futures bounce after three days of losses

CME Group hog futures rose on Thursday, snapping a three session losing streak that pushed prices to their lowest since March 7 on some mild bargain buying, traders said.

But the gains were kept in check by concerns that the growth of the Chinese herd could slow buying demand from the world’s top pork consumer.

Cattle contracts were mixed, with live cattle falling for the fourth time in five sessions as rising corn futures continued to stoke concerns about soaring feed costs.

Feeder cattle ended slightly higher after the most-active August contract touched its lowest since November 2.

The U.S. Agriculture Department said that export sales of pork totaled 31,500 tonnes in the week ended April 21, well above the prior week’s total of 12,900.

Beef export sales fell to 11,600 tonnes from 15,000 tonnes, USDA said.

Benchmark June lean hogs settled 0.625 cents higher at 110.975 cents per pound.

CME June live cattle futures dropped 1.125 cents to settle at 133.9 cents per pound. The contract turned lower after hitting technical resistance at its 200-day moving average.

CME feeder cattle firmed, with May rising 0.6 cent to 157.95 cents per pound and most-active August feeders up 1.45 cents at 170.4 cents a pound.