Aug. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Hog futures fell for the third straight session, capping the longest slump this month, on signs of slowing demand for U.S. pork as supplies increase. Cattle rose.
Meatpackers processed an estimated 2.177 million hogs last week, up 7.8 percent from a week earlier, and the slaughter was 0.7 percent bigger today compared with a week earlier, government data show. Wholesale-pork prices fell 1.7 percent last week, the first decline in a month, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Futures lost 1.6 percent in the previous two sessions.
“Slaughter numbers are going to pick up,” Chad Henderson, a market analyst at Prime Agricultural Consultants Inc. in Brookfield, Wisconsin, said in a telephone interview. “Products were lower on the week. You just have people who are long this market a little bit nervous.”
Hog futures for October settlement slid 0.3 percent to close at 86.475 cents a pound at 1 p.m. on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.
Hedge funds and other large speculators increased their bullish wagers by 3.7 percent to 80,911 futures and options contracts in the week ended Aug. 13, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data showed on Aug. 16. That marked the highest since the reports began in 2006.
The “massive” net-long position spurred market concerns because demand may ebb heading into the fourth quarter, Henderson said.
Cattle futures for October delivery climbed 0.1 percent to $1.28075 a pound in Chicago.
Feeder-cattle futures for September settlement added 0.2 percent to $1.5795 a pound.
--Editors: Thomas Galatola, Steve Stroth