CME lean hog futures ended mixed, with nearby months pressured by profit-taking and caution ahead of a government report.
Lean hogs for August settled up 0.7 cent at 95.2 cents per pound, while December lean hogs gained 0.875 cent, or 1%, to 85.55 cents.
Traders were "a bit apprehensive to push higher before this afternoon's Hogs and Pigs report," ADM Investor Services says. Given the market's sharp gains recently, the report is seen as unlikely to be strongly supporive. Lower corn futures added to pressure Friday, analysts say, as that could encourage future hog production.
Cash hog bids were reported steady to weaker after USDA's regional and national weighted average prices hit all-time highs Thursday. Although wholesale pork prices also set a new record Thursday, processing margins have been squeezed since gains in the hog markets outpaced those made in pork.
The latest Dow Jones Newswires pork packer margin index was minus $12.52 per head, compared with minus $14.16 the previous day.
The USDA's pork carcass composite value, a measure of wholesale prices, on Thursday was up $2.36 to $99.27 a hundred pounds.
Some processors further trimmed their slaughtering schedules, and this week's figure was estimated at 1.936 million, down from 1.973 million the previous week and 1.947 million a year ago.
The terminal markets traded steady to $1 a hundred pounds higher, with top prices from $66 to $72 a hundred pounds on a live basis.