Livestock Report

Ben DiCostanzoGeneral Commentary

Walsh Trading Daily Insights


With cutout prices soaring for cattle and pork, packers would love for the President’s use of the Defense Production Act to keep plants open and running smoothly. But with human beings in the mix and worried about their own safety (warranted) concerns packers’ desires are having a difficult time coming true. Slaughter levels remain low and until workers feel they are being protected from getting sick even monetary concerns will take a back seat to their safety. Cattle slaughter was estimated to be 80,000. Last year it was 122,000. Hog slaughter was estimated at 298,000, which is down from last year’s 470,000. “The coronavirus crisis will continue to idle U.S. meat plants and slow production, Tyson Foods Inc. said on Monday, signaling more disruptions to the U.S. food supply even after U.S. President Donald Trump ordered facilities to stay open.” The front month cattle and hog contracts were weaker, with the cattle markets breaking down into the middle of their 3-week trading ranges and Hogs consolidating within yesterday’s trading range. Boxed Beef Cutout values continued their surge with choice cutouts rising 18.77 to a new record at 428.82 and select also reach a new record jumping 33.88 to 410.54. The choice/ select spread narrowed sharply to 18.28 on 126 loads. Cash trading took place at 95.00 on a live basis and from 145.00 to 170.00 for dressed. The Feeder Cattle Index rose and is at 119.59 as of 5/04/2020. The Lean Hog Index jumped and is at 59.79 as of 5/1/2020. The Pork Cutout Index surged and is at 98.85 as of 5/4/2020.

Trade Suggestion(s)


Futures N/A

Options N/A

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Ben DiCostanzo

Senior Market Strategist

Walsh Trading, Inc.

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