The USDA’s “Export Sales” report is back after a momentary pause during the federal shutdown, and the report indicates that pork net sales are on a slow descent.

The report showed pork net sales of 8,600 metric tons (MT) for 2013, down 5 percent from the last report and 32 percent below the 10-week high.

These sales were primarily for Mexico (1,800 MT), South Korea (1,700 MT), Canada (1,600 MT), Japan (1,000 MT), and Hong Kong (800 MT). 

Exports of 8,400 MT were down 7 percent from the previous week and 1 percent from the four-week average.  The primary destinations were Mexico (3,100 MT), Japan (1,500 MT), Canada (1,000 MT), South Korea (800 MT), and Hong Kong (600 MT). 

On Wednesday, talk of cash and wholesale weaknesses uncut hog futures. Renewed wholesale weakness depressed nearby hog futures in early Thursday action as recent concerns about the short-term outlook weighed on the hog and pork complex.

December hog futures slumped 0.10 cents to 88.05 cents/pound early Thursday morning, while April crept up 0.02 cents to 90.62 cents/pound.