Lean Hogs Go To Expanded Limits Today

Lean Hog futures posted limit losses in all 2019 contracts yesterday except May. Preliminary open interest rose 552 contracts, suggesting modest net new selling rather than the massive long liquidation you might expect given the price swing. Volume was actually very similar to Wednesday. We’ll be back to the expanded $4.50 daily margin today. The USDA Export Sales report showed just 15,505 MT in pork bookings for the week ending 4/18. That was well below last week and far below two weeks ago. China was shipping but not buying. The CME Lean Hog Index was up another 72 cents from the previous day @ $82.79 on April 23. The USDA pork carcass cutout value was $3.26 lower in the Thursday afternoon report, at $83.72. The often-volatile belly led the way, down $22.78 per hundredweight. The national average base hog was at $81.24 on Thursday, up 50 cents from the day prior. Estimated week to date FI hog slaughter is 1.752 million head through Thursday. That was down from last year and the week prior due to Monday’s plant down time. --provided by Brugler Marketing & Management

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