U.S. livestock futures climbed Thursday as demand worries waned and broad-based commodity strength lifted prices.
Live cattle and lean hog futures benefited from a wide range of markets rising as the U.S. dollar slipped.
U.S. lean hog futures settled higher, continuing their rebound from recent lows as the demand outlook brightens.
Lean hog futures for June settled 0.97 cent, or 1.1%, higher at 94.2 cents, while the July contract ended 0.72 cent, or 0.8%, higher at 94.15 cents. The May contract ended 0.6 cent, or 0.7%, higher at 92.62 cents in thin trading volume ahead of Friday's expiration.
Firm pork cutout values and expectations of a seasonal bump in demand boosted the market, Doane Advisory Services wrote in a report Thursday. The market also got a boost from broader commodity gains.
Pork continues to experience solid export demand with the USDA reporting Thursday March pork exports totaled 490 million pounds, up more than 25% from last month and the same period a year ago.
In the cash hog markets, prices were expected steady to firm for additional loads to arrive next week. Expectations for seasonally tighter supplies next week and improved demand for pork driven by late May promotions by grocers contributed to firmer predictions for cash prices.
The terminal markets traded steady to $1 higher with top prices from $61.50 to $62.00 per hundred pounds live basis.
The latest Dow Jones Newswires pork packer margin index was plus 38 cents per head, compared with plus 68 cents the previous day.
USDA's pork carcass composite value, a measure of wholesale prices, for Wednesday was $92.36 per hundred pounds, up 56 cents.