Cattle Decline on Signs of Rising U.S. Beef Supply; Hogs Advance

Cattle futures declined for the second straight session on signs of increasing U.S. beef supplies. Hog prices rose.

On Aug. 24, wholesale beef fell the most in five weeks, and meatpackers processed 653,000 cattle last week, up 1.6 percent from a week earlier, U.S. Department of Agriculture data show. Farmers are doing “the reverse” of expansion, liquidating older cows and unproductive animals amid high feed costs, said Dennis Smith, an analyst at Archer Financial Services.

“The beef is topping off,” Smith said in a telephone interview from Chicago. “I expect pressure in beef in cash and futures.”

Cattle futures for October delivery slid 0.3 percent to $1.2405 a pound at 10:03 a.m. on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Through Aug. 24, the price gained 2.5 percent this year.

On Aug. 24, wholesale beef fell 0.9 percent to $1.9214 a pound, the biggest decline since July 19, the latest USDA data show.

More than 35 percent of the Midwest was in extreme drought as of Aug. 21, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. Corn, the main ingredient in livestock feed, surged 60 percent from June 15 through Aug. 24 on the Chicago Board of Trade.

Feeder-cattle futures for October settlement dropped 0.2 percent to $1.44175 a pound on the CME.

Hog futures for October settlement rose 0.3 percent to 72.575 cents a pound.

To contact the reporter on this story: Elizabeth Campbell in Chicago at ecampbell14@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steve Stroth at sstroth@bloomberg.net

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