LIVESTOCK HIGHLIGHTS: Top Stories of the Day

Features Dow Jones Newswires

TOP STORIES

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Fonterra to Learn Outcome of Damages Claim -- Market Talk

2048 GMT - The world's biggest dairy exporter Fonterra will on Friday learn the outcome of a damages claim brought by French food products company Danone. The New Zealand co-operative requested a trading halt on Friday, and said it would provide details of the outcome of its arbitration with Danone, which is seeking more than NZ$900 million from Fonterra as a result of a botulism scare in 2013, when Fonterra recalled whey protein concentrate as a precaution. "Fonterra remains in a strong financial position and any damages award will not affect our ability to operate. We will share further details with the market, our farmers and staff as soon as practical," says Foneterra CEO Theo Spierings. (ben.collins@wsj.com)

China's 2018 Pork Imports Seen Increasing -- Market Talk

0502 GMT - After big declines this year from 2016's record high, Rabobank sees China pork imports rising next year. That amid production drops in the country's east and south "due to environmental policies ... as domestic logistics over long distances are not yet competitive due to the lack of cold chains and high transportation costs." (lucy.craymer@wsj.com)

STORIES OF INTEREST

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Kroger Rings Up Gains in Fight Against Wal-Mart, Amazon

Kroger Co. boosted sales by improving online ordering and cutting prices at its stores, a sign of progress in the grocer's fight against rising competition from discounters and Amazon.com Inc. The Cincinnati-based chain said Thursday that sales grew by 1.1% in the quarter ended Nov. 4 at its established stores, topping expectations. Kroger expects sales to increase by a wider margin in the fourth quarter by that same metric, which excludes fuel sales.

Stocks Higher on Gains for Financial Shares

The Dow Jones Industrial Average surged more than 300 points Thursday to finish above 24000 for the first time, as hopes grew for a tax bill. Shares of financial firms led major indexes higher as investors closely watched Republicans' progress on the tax overhaul plan. Analysts say banks are among the stocks that would benefit from the plan's proposed corporate tax cut since they tend to pay a relatively high tax rate. Senate Republicans voted to begin debating the bill Wednesday and a final vote in the Senate could come as early as Thursday night.

FUTURES MARKETS

Slow Cash Cattle Trade Pressures Futures

Cattle futures fell as traders waited for the week's cash trade to develop. Many traders expected physical cattle prices to rise, and buying interest in the futures market waned as they waited for confirmation of this week's price direction. After the close, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said that cattle traded in Kansas for $120 to $121 per 100 pounds on a live basis. Cash prices last week averaged at $119 live and $189 dressed.

CASH MARKETS

Zumbrota, Minn Hog Steady At $35.00 - Nov 30

Barrow and gilt prices at the Zumbrota, Minn., livestock market today

are steady at $35.00 per hundredweight.

Sow prices are steady. Sows weighing 400-450 pounds are at $36.00-$38.00,

450-500 pounds are $36.00-$38.00 and those over 500 pounds are $40.00-$42.00.

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 30

All figures are on a per-head basis.

Date Standard Margin Estimated margin

Operating Index at vertically -

integrated operations

*

Nov 30 +$43.56 +$ 47.70

Nov 29 +$45.62 +$ 47.96

Nov 28 +$45.80 +$ 46.18

* 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 108.0

(Percent of Year-Ago) Select 106.6

USDA Boxed Beef, Pork Reports

Wholesale choice-grade beef prices Thursday fell $1.91 per hundred pounds, to $204.64, according to the USDA. Select-grade prices fell $1.63 per hundred pounds, to $184.21. The total load count was 190. Wholesale pork prices fell 12 cents, to $82.59 a hundred pounds, based on Omaha, Neb., price quotes.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

November 30, 2017 17:48 ET (22:48 GMT)