LIVESTOCK HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

Features Dow Jones Newswires

TOP STORIES

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Hope For Competing Whole Foods Bid Dims -- Market Talk

12:44 ET - Whole Foods Market (WFM) drops to the $42 offer Amazon.com (AMZN) made to buy the grocer two weeks ago on more skepticism that other bidders will emerge. Oppenheimer downgraded WFM Thursday to perform from outperform on expectations fading over another bidder. The stock had closed as high as $43.26 on June 21. Oppenheimer was among those that said another bid could materialize. (heather.haddon@wsj.com; @heatherhaddon)

Blue Apron's Shares Flat in Trading Debut -- 3rd Update

Shares of Blue Apron Holdings Inc. stalled in their public debut Thursday, capping a rocky initial public offering for the meal-kit maker.

Shares rose as high as $11, according to FactSet, before closing at $10 -- their IPO price. In an unusual move Wednesday that reflected weak investor demand for the IPO, Blue Apron lowered the expected price range for its shares to $10 to $11 apiece, from the $15 to $17 range it sought earlier in a regulatory filing.

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STORIES OF INTEREST

Tesco Asks Regulator to Fast Track Antitrust Investigation of Booker Deal

LONDON--Tesco PLC (TSCO.LN) said Thursday it has requested the U.K.'s competition regulator to fast track its inquiry into the company's acquisition of food wholesaler Booker Group PLC (BOK.LN).

The retailer added that it anticipates the U.K. Competition and Markets Authority to issue a decision on whether to refer the merger to a phase two investigation in the next two weeks.

With Focus on Qualty, Conagra Revenue Falls -- Market Talk

8:32 ET - Conagra Brands (CAG) blames a fall in revenue and volumes in its fiscal 4Q on its focus on raising quality to better serve consumers. CAG has said that consumers are increasingly interested in healthier, more-convenient foods and think about value, including quality, and not just price when making buying decisions. CAG sees volumes and revenue in its refrigerated and frozen segment decline 5% as it optimizes pricing and trade promotions and discontinues lower-performing products. Across CAG, revenue falls 9.3% in the quarter and 3.6% on an adjusted basis primarily due to the volume declines. (austen.hufford@wsj.com; @austenhufford)

FUTURES MARKETS

Hogs End Higher as Prices Point to Strong Pork Demand; Cattle Steady

Lean hog futures rallied ahead of a government update on hog expansion to be released after today's close.

The report, released at 3 p.m. ET, will give traders an indication of the market setup to expect for fourth-quarter supplies.

CBOT lean hogs for July rose 1.8% to 89.475 a pound.

In the cattle market, traders said light cash trade for the June contract, which expires tomorrow, continued to be behind futures, with a small amount of live cattle exchanging hands at $1.18 to $1.195 a pound in the cash market.

CASH MARKETS

Zumbrota, Minn Hog Steady At $55.00 - Jun 29

Barrow and gilt prices at the Zumbrota, Minn., livestock market today are steady at $55.00 per hundredweight.

Sow prices are $3.00-$4.00 higher. Sows weighing under 450 pounds are $51.00-$53.00, 400-450 pounds are at $51.00-$53.00, 450-500 pounds are $51.00-$53.00 and those over 500 pounds are $56.00-$58.00.

The day's total run is estimated at 100 head.

Prices are provided by the Central Livestock Association.

Estimated U.S. Pork Packer Margin Index - Jun 29

All figures are on a per-head basis.

Date Standard Margin Estimated margin

Operating Index at vertically -

integrated operations

*

Jun 29 +$23.80 +$89.09

Jun 28 +$29.48 +$90.47

Jun 27 +$28.19 +$89.22

* 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 108.9

(Percent of Year-Ago) Select 107.0

USDA Boxed Beef, Pork Reports

Wholesale choice-grade beef prices Thursday fell $2.88 per hundred pounds, to $226.55, according to the USDA. Select-grade prices fell $2.51 per hundred pounds, to $210.16. The total load count was 152. Wholesale pork prices fell 64 cents, to $101.84 a hundred pounds, based on Omaha, Neb., price quotes.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

June 29, 2017 17:38 ET (21:38 GMT)