Hog Prices Gain as Power Loss May Spur Meat Buying; Cattle Rose
Hog futures climbed on speculation that electricity losses from Hurricane Sandy will prompt U.S. consumers in the Northeast to increase meat purchases in the coming weeks to replace spoiled food. Cattle also rose.
The Atlantic superstorm came ashore in southern New Jersey at 8 p.m. local time yesterday and drove floodwaters to life- threatening levels in a region with 60 million residents. At least 3.6 million homes and businesses were without power yesterday, the government said.
“Without power out there, those people are going to have to restock their freezers here in the next few weeks,” Lou Arens, a broker at PCI Advisory Services, said in a telephone interview from Waucoma, Iowa. “That may boost product value over the next few days.”
Hog futures for December settlement rose 0.4 percent to settle at 78.1 cents a pound at 3 p.m. on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The commodity is down 7.4 percent this year.
Wholesale pork increased 0.1 percent to 85.26 cents a pound yesterday, U.S. Department of Agriculture data show. Meatpackers processed 845,000 hogs in the first two days of this week, down 2.8 percent from a week earlier, government data show.
Cattle futures for December delivery gained 0.7 percent to settle at $1.262 a pound in Chicago. Prices are up 3.9 percent this year.
Feeder-cattle futures for January settlement rose 1.4 percent to $1.495 a pound on the CME.
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