LIVESTOCK HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

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Caution Advised After Latest Slip In Dairy Prices -- Market Talk

2019 GMT - Dairy prices slipped for the third consecutive time overnight, down 3.5% in total and with whole milk powder dropping 5.5%. For the latter, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group says the main weakness was in product for delivery in the early New Year, "perhaps suggesting that demand for the Chinese free-trade window is now somewhat satisfied". They note that falls for longer-dated contracts were more modest, although importantly, prices across all contract periods are now below the key US$3,000/tonne level. ANZ downgraded their 2017/18 milk price forecast to $6.25-$6.50 per kg last month, and at face value, they say this latest auction result warrants some further caution. "However, with the NZD/USD down around 4% since the mid-October auction, it shouldn't be forgotten that there are some other key factors supporting the local farm-gate returns," they say. (ben.collins@wsj.com)

Higher Dollar, Lower Crude Pressure Grain Prices

Grain futures fell on Tuesday as a higher U.S. dollar and lower crude oil prices drew investors away from agricultural commodities.

The WSJ Dollar Index, which measures the greenback against a basket of currencies, rose 0.3% to 87.9. That made U.S. crops more expensive for international buyers. December crude oil futures fell, meanwhile, luring investors out of the commodity sector.

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STORIES OF INTEREST

Starbucks Opens 1st Upscale Bakery in Seattle Roastery -- Market Talk

09:26 ET - Starbucks is spending "tens of millions of dollars," as it adds a baking operation to its coffee house business. The chain, which made an investment in Italian bakery Princi, opened its first such bakery inside its Seattle Roastery on Tuesday and plans to include one in every Roastery it opens around the world. Starbucks also plans to open up to 1,000 standalone Princi bakeries selling Starbucks reserve coffee. The bet on baking comes at a time when traffic growth to Starbucks cafes is slowing amid a crowded and highly competitive coffee market in the US. (julie.jargon@wsj.com)

Retailers' Milk Push Has Limits, Dean Says -- Market Talk

10:10 ET - Top US milk processor Dean Foods has seen some of its largest retail customers invest in processing and bottle their own milk, but CEO Ralph Scozzafava says some have come to realize there's limits to the strategy. Dean has increased business with some retail chains who have their own milk facilities, he says, as it becomes clear that for retailers, there's more money to be made selling jugs of milk at the cash register than processing it. Dean's also able to be more competitive providing milk under stores' own brands due to its national scale, he said. (jacob.bunge@wsj.com; @jacobbunge)

FUTURES MARKETS

Hog Futures Slide to Two-Week Low

Hog futures fell for a fifth consecutive session as meatpackers continued offering less money for pigs.

December lean hog futures at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange fell 1.1% to 63.925 cents a pound, the lowest close in over two weeks.

CASH MARKETS

Zumbrota, Minn Hog $1.00 Lower At $38.00 - Nov 7

Barrow and gilt prices at the Zumbrota, Minn., livestock market today are $1.00 lower at $38.00 per hundredweight. Sow prices are $1.00-$3.00 higher. Sows weighing under 450 pounds are $31.00-$33.00, 400-450 pounds are at $31.00-$33.00, 450-500 pounds are $31.00-$33.00 and those over 500 pounds are $35.00-$37.00.

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 - Nov 7

This report reflects U.S. pork packer processing margins. The margin indices

are calculated using current cash hog or carcass values and wholesale pork

cutout values and may not reflect actual margins at the plants. These

estimates reflect the general health of the industry and are not meant to

be indicative of any particular company or plant.

Source: USDA, based on Wall Street Journal calculations

All figures are on a per-head basis.

Date Standard Margin Estimated margin

Operating Index at vertically -

integrated operations

*

Nov 7 +$37.28 +$ 41.98

Nov 6 +$33.41 +$ 40.35

Nov 3 +$32.53 +$ 40.86

* 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 112.7

(Percent of Year-Ago) Select 114.3

USDA Boxed Beef, Pork Reports

Wholesale choice-grade beef prices Tuesday rose $2.07 per hundred pounds, to $212.64, according to the USDA. Select-grade prices rose $2.99 per hundred pounds, to $197.76. The total load count was 116. Wholesale pork prices rose 76 cents, to $79.93 a hundred pounds, based on Omaha, Neb., price quotes.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 07, 2017 17:35 ET (22:35 GMT)