LIVESTOCK HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

Features Dow Jones Newswires

TOP STORIES

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Shake Shack to Serve Up Changes With New Finance Chief

Tara Comonte struggled to make a perfect burger on her first day at the Shake Shack restaurant on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.

"Working in the shack was a physically hard day. These pieces of meat get smashed down on a scorching hot grill...and you put eight of them at a time, 'smash, smash,' like you're pulverizing this thing," she said. "I just didn't have enough hands and I kept forgetting to put the [fries] timer on."

Ms. Comonte is likely to need more than two hands to juggle things as Shake Shack Inc.'s newest finance chief. Once a darling the fast-casual dining sector, the company's same-store sales fell 2.5% in the first quarter and it revised its 2017 comparable sales outlook downward. Although the stock is trading above its January 2015 initial public offering price of $21, shares have fallen more than 60% to $34.88 as of Friday, from its peak of $92.86 in May of that year.

Grain, Soybeans Skyrocket Ahead of July 4

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Wheat futures hit new highs on Monday, yanking other grain and soybean contracts higher as traders jostled for position ahead of the July 4 break.

Futures for spring wheat, a higher-protein grain that has been hit by drought-like conditions in the northern Plains, popped above $8 a bushel at the Minneapolis Grain Exchange for the first time in over three years. Other wheat classes traded at the Chicago Board of Trade also climbed to multiyear highs.

STORIES OF INTEREST

Stocks Start Second Half on an Upswing

Rallying energy and financial stocks lifted the Dow Jones Industrial Average on the first day of the third quarter.

Trading was quiet in Monday's session, which ended early ahead of the July 4 holiday in the U.S.

Stocks climbed to records in the first half of the year, but many investors and analysts expect muted gains over the next several months. Recent weakness in inflation data, higher-than-average stock valuations and volatile commodity prices threaten to stall the stock rally in the second half of 2017, some have said.

Brazil Posts $7.2 Billion June Trade Surplus

SAO PAULO--Brazil posted a trade surplus of $7.2 billion in June, down from $7.7 billion in May, the country's trade ministry said Monday.

Brazil exported $19.79 billion worth of goods and services last month, and imports totaled $12.59 billion. For the year through June, Brazil is running a trade surplus of $36.22 billion, according to the ministry.

FUTURES MARKETS

Cattle Futures Recover Losses Ahead of Holiday Break

Cattle futures touched a multimonth low before closing unchanged in a quiet session on Monday, as a continued slide in beef prices pressured prices.

Live cattle futures for August delivery closed steady at $1.163 a pound after dropping to $1.15325 earlier in the session, the lowest point since early March.

CASH MARKETS

Estimated U.S. Pork Packer Margin Index - Jul 3

All figures are on a per-head basis.

Date Standard Margin Estimated margin

Operating Index at vertically -

integrated operations

*

Jul 3 +$28.49 +$ 92.92

Jun 30 +$28.70 +$ 90.64

Jun 29 +$23.80 +$ 89.09

* 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 106.9

(Percent of Year-Ago) Select 106.4

USDA Boxed Beef, Pork Reports

Wholesale choice-grade beef prices Monday fell $1.84 per hundred pounds, to $222.89, according to the USDA. Select-grade prices fell 97 cents per hundred pounds, to $207.45. The total load count was 126. Wholesale pork prices rose $1.06, to $103.62 a hundred pounds, based on Omaha, Neb., price quotes.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

July 03, 2017 17:01 ET (21:01 GMT)