Cash hogs continue to trend lower week after week. October hog futures closed lower yesterday, but were substantially off the lows showing a little support around $87. The cold storage report that came out was seen as a bearish factor so it should lend to a continued down trend in the cash market and follow through in the futures. Seasonally, we are coming into a period of increased production, further implicating that prices should continue their downward trend. The USDA pork cutout, released after the close yesterday, came in at $109.73, down from $112.22 on Monday and $116.46 the previous week. This was the lowest the cutout had been since June 25. A year ago, the cutout was 75.49, and two years ago it was 79.08. The CME Lean Hog Index as of August 20th was 107.90 up from 107.56 the previous session but down from 109.67 the previous week. This leaves October hogs at a $20.98 discount to the cash market as compared with the 5-year average discount of $5.56. Internationally, China pork production is back over pre-Covid levels and implicated that less imports are expected. I would look to short the Oct hog futures with a price target at $83.50 and a risk level up to $92.50, keeping within the current range of the market activity. December futures would look to have more of a stronger sell-off with the actual current increase in production coming to market The USDA estimated hog slaughter came in at 474,000 head yesterday. This brings the total for the week so far to 911,000 head, down from 949,000 last week and 953,000 a year ago.

Lean Hogs Oct ’21 Daily Chart

Peter McGinn

Peter graduated from DePaul University with a degree in Economics. Peter started his career with an IB at the Chicago Board of Trade. He then moved on to TradeStation Securities for a time before starting as a Market Strategist at RJO Futures in 2018.