Cattle Futures Fall on Lower Cash Prices

By Benjamin Parkin Features Dow Jones Newswires

Cattle futures slid after cash prices ticked lower Wednesday in a closely watched online auction.

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Packers bought cattle for delivery up to nine days out for an average of $1.39 a pound during Wednesday's Fed Cattle Exchange auction. That was down from a $1.40 a pound average last week. But demand was stronger, with over twice as many cattle sold this time.

Packers have been forced into paying more to secure inventory amid a bout of tight supply. But analysts see inventories easing in the months to come, and traders have begun pushing futures prices lower.

Live cattle futures for June delivery fell 0.6% to $1.242 a pound, while August feeder cattle were also lower. Beef prices, however, rose as a grilling season boost continued.

Hog futures fell, with selling in the cattle market weighing on prices. CME June lean hog futures fell 0.2% to 77.2 cents a pound.

Wholesale pork prices also slid, falling to 79.69 cents a pound as of Wednesday morning.

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Write to Benjamin Parkin at benjamin.parkin@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

May 10, 2017 15:28 ET (19:28 GMT)