Technical selling extends setback in CME lean hogs

Chart-based selling drove Chicago Mercantile Exchange lean hog futures lower on Tuesday, brokers said, as the market extended a recent setback.

Most-active October lean hog futures fell 0.950 cent, or 1.2%, to settle at 78.200 cents per pound and touched their lowest price since July 3.

The contract has dropped 10% since reaching a March high on Aug. 1.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) quoted the wholesale pork carcass cutout at $108.63 per cwt, down 45 cents from Monday. Cutout values for pork bellies slid $3.54 to $194.85 per cwt.

Brokers said it seems belly values may have peaked after a recent surge that drove gains in the pork cutout.

In China, the world’s top pork consumer, processor WH Group expects hog prices to rise 10% to 20% in the second half of 2023 from the first six months, supported by stronger demand and smaller supply glut.

In CME live cattle futures, meanwhile, trading was largely sideways, brokers said.

Most-active October live cattle dropped 0.700 cent to 179.975 cents per pound and hit its lowest price since Aug. 1. September feeder cattle futures eased 0.350 cent to 249.775 cents per pound and touched a one-week low.

U.S. beef demand has slowed due to high prices as producers have reduced the size of the U.S. herd to its lowest in decades, brokers said.

Choice cuts of boxed beef rose by $1.76 to $307.26 per hundredweight, while select cuts of boxed beef increased by $2.58 to 283.07 per hundredweight, the USDA said.