CHICAGO, May 3 (Reuters) - Chicago Mercantile Exchange lean
hog futures soared to contract highs on Monday on tightening
U.S. supplies and rising cash prices.
Prices have been rallying as consumer demand is rising due
to easing pandemic-induced restrictions on dining and travel,
analysts said. Hog supplies are tight after some farmers
euthanized hogs or performed abortions on pregnant sows last
year as slaughterhouses closed during COVID-19 outbreaks among
CME most-active June lean hogs ended up 2.925 cents
at 112.650 cents per pound, and futures set new life-of-contract
highs. The market remained strong after finishing up by the
daily, exchange-imposed 3-cent limit on Friday.
Cash prices were also firm, and the U.S. Department of
Agriculture pork cutout value rose $1.20 for carcasses to
$111.66 per cwt.
The lack of available hogs has led to negative margins for
pork processors. Packers were seeing a $18.50 loss per head on
Monday, compared to a loss of $9.25 a week earlier, according to
Denver-based livestock marketing advisory service
In the cattle market, futures were mixed as traders are
expecting weakness in the cash prices, a broker said.
CME's June live cattle futures fell 1.275 cents to
115.300 cents per pound, while August feeder cattle futures
edged up 0.05 cents to close at 146.800 cents per pound.
Choice beef cutouts increased by $2.80 per cwt to $299.30,
while select cuts rose $0.74 to $283.79, the U.S. Department of
Domestic and export demand for beef is strong, traders said.
Beef packer margins jumped to $659.65 per head from $569.30 a
week ago, according to HedgersEdge.
(Reporting by Tom Polansek in Chicago)