Hog futures declined to a one-month low on speculation that winter storms are slowing U.S. consumer demand as shoppers stay indoors. Cattle also fell.
There will be a as much as 3 inches (7.6 centimeters) of snow in New York City and parts of southern New England tomorrow, after a blizzard that struck the region starting Feb. 8. Last week’s storm dropped 24.9 inches on Boston, the fifth- most on record, and 40 inches on Hamden, Connecticut, according to the National Weather Service. About 613,000 customers from Maine to New York were without power and travel was crippled.
“The Northeast retail business basically came to a standstill,” Lawrence Kane, a market adviser at Stewart- Peterson Group in in Yates City, Illinois, said in a telephone interview. “It’s a real tough situation for demand as far as meat is concerned.”
Hog futures for April settlement fell 0.8 percent to 85.7 cents a pound at 11:53 a.m. on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange after reaching 85.5 cents, the lowest for the most-active contract since Jan. 10.
Wholesale pork dropped 5.9 percent to 81.69 cents a pound last week, the biggest slide since September 2011, U.S. Department of Agriculture data show.
Cattle futures for April delivery slumped 1.5 percent to $1.284 a pound on the CME. Prices are down 1.5 percent this year through yesterday.
Feeder-cattle futures for March settlement fell by the exchange limit of 3 cents, or 2.1 percent, to $1.418 a pound, the lowest since Aug. 10.
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