LIVESTOCK HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

Features Dow Jones Newswires

TOP STORIES

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Global Beef Prices Rise as India's Supply Under Threat

India's move to ban the slaughter of its cattle has sent global beef prices higher in recent days, amid concerns of reduced supply from the world's biggest exporter of the meat by volume.

India's government last week decided to ban the sale of cattle -- which include cows and buffalo -- for slaughter at livestock markets. The government said the order was aimed at preventing uncontrolled and unregulated animal trade.

Panera Solves Lunchtime Bottleneck With Technology -- Market Talk

09:42 ET - A multi-year effort to upgrade technology allowed Panera (PNRA) to cut order times from eight minutes to one and speed past competitors in terms of sales growth. After six years and more than $100M worth of investment, online ordering and delivery have taken off, putting PNRA ahead of rivals that are just now starting to roll out digital ordering and delivery. More than a quarter of PNRA's company-owned restaurant sales now come from online orders and the bakery chain is on track to offer delivery in 40% of its 2,000 restaurants by year-end. (julie.jargon@wsj.com)

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STORIES OF INTEREST

Grain, Soybean Futures Gain on Weaker Dollar

CHICAGO--Grain and soybean futures rose Friday as the dollar fell to fresh lows.

The weaker dollar, which took a hit after an underwhelming U.S. jobs report, threw U.S. agricultural exporters a lifeline at a time when they are facing tough competition from South American producers. The WSJ dollar index dropped 0.5% to 88.32.

But broader selling in the commodity sector, with crude-oil futures sliding further below $50 a barrel, limited gains.

Consumer Companies Feel Pressure As Wage Growth Lags -- Market Talk

11:06 ET - Food makers and other consumer companies have said recently that even though the economy is improving, consumer spending has not followed with similar expansion as it usually does. Economists say that could explain why May's falling unemployment rate didn't come with the typical accelerating wage growth. Employers in certain industries are still reluctant to ramp up wages at a time when consumer spending is still choppy, they say. Friday's jobs report also suggests that some industries may have a tougher time finding workers going forward as unemployment hit a 16-year low. (annie.gasparro@wsj.com)

FUTURES MARKETS

Bullish Bets Push Cattle Futures Higher

CHICAGO -- Cattle futures jumped on Friday after beef packers paid sharply higher prices in the cash market.

With packer margins per animal well into triple digits, feedyards have raised asking prices for their cattle despite a tendency to slump at this time of year. That had hedge funds and money managers pouring into the futures trade, analysts said, as they took advantage of the heavy discount to cash to buy up contracts.

CASH MARKETS

Estimated U.S. Pork Packer Margin Index - Jun 2

All figures are on a per-head basis.

Date Standard Margin Estimated margin

Operating Index at vertically -

integrated operations

*

Jun 2 +$30.79 +$ 65.27

Jun 1 +$29.67 +$ 64.67

May 31 +$28.12 +$ 63.25

* Based on Iowa State University's latest estimated cost of production.

A positive number indicates a processing margin above the cost of

production of the animals.

Beef-O-Meter

This report compares the USDA's latest beef carcass composite

values as a percentage of their respective year-ago prices.

Beef

For Today Choice 110.4

(Percent of Year-Ago) Select 108.0

USDA Boxed Beef, Pork Reports

Wholesale choice-grade beef prices Friday fell 34 cents per hundred pounds, to $245.24, according to the USDA. Select-grade prices rose 84 cents per hundred pounds, to $218.06. The total load count was 156. Wholesale pork prices rose 28 cents, to $90.76 a hundred pounds, based on Omaha, Neb., price quotes.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

June 02, 2017 17:16 ET (21:16 GMT)