Hog futures, trading little changed, headed for the fourth straight weekly gain on signs of increasing demand from U.S. meatpackers amid tight supplies. Cattle prices fell.
Meatpackers processed 1.617 million hogs in the first four days of this week, up 0.2 percent a year earlier, U.S. Department of Agriculture data show. Spot hogs headed for the seventh straight weekly increase, the longest rally since at least January 2004, government figures show. Yesterday, futures reached a 23-month high.
“Supplies continue to be seasonally tight, so packers have to compete for supply,” Doug Houghton, a commodity analyst at Brock Associates, said in a telephone interview from Milwaukee. “Demand is good enough that they have orders.”
Hog futures for July settlement fell less than 0.1 percent to 95.775 cents a pound at 9:57 a.m. on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Yesterday, the price touched 96.4 cents, the highest for a most-active contract since July 7, 2011. A fourth weekly gain would mark the longest rally since in more than two months.
Cattle futures for August delivery fell 0.4 percent to $1.1955 a pound. Through yesterday, the commodity dropped 9.3 percent this year.
Feeder-cattle futures for August settlement declined 0.4 percent to $1.441 a pound.
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