U.S. lean-hog futures were mixed to higher, bouncing back on technical signals to buy, after a week of steady declines.
Though front-month hog futures fell 1% for the week, some traders think futures could have more steam in them before they reach their seasonal "top." December lean hogs jumped 77 to 78.90, February gained 17 to 84.45.
U.S. live-cattle futures fell Friday amid a drop in wholesale beef prices and negative technical factors. Feeder cattle were also lower. October live-cattle fell25 to $125, December, the most actively traded contract, also slid, dropping 4 to $125. November feeders shed 72 to $145.
At the livestock auction held Thursday at Smithfield a total of 617 cattle and no goats were sold. Slaughter cows trended $0.50 to $3.50 lower, feeder steers trended $3.00 to $16.50 lower and heifers trended mixed when compared to last week’s sales.
N.C. EGGS: The market is higher large, steady on the balance. Supplies are moderate. Retail demand is good. Weighted average prices for small lot sales of grade A eggs delivered to nearby retail outlets: Extra Large 136.39, Large 136.08, Medium 119.56, and Small 101.00.
Grain and soybean futures drifted lower Friday, as investors took a conservative approach ahead of the weekend amid concerns about sluggish export demand for U.S. crops. Futures also were pressured Friday by a lack of news affecting fundamentals in the corn, wheat and soy markets.
Corn prices fell, with the December contract settling down 4 1/4 at $7.37 December wheat in Chicago ended down 9 to $8.63, December wheat in KC dropped 5 to $9.09, November soybeans fell 2 3/4 to $15.61.
No. 2 yellow shelled corn trended 4 to 5 cents lower when compared to last report. Prices ranged $7.28-$8.12 at feed mills and $7.22-7.68 at elevators. No. 1 yellow soybeans trended 3 to 18 cents lower and were $15.66 at processors, and $15.06-$15.31 at elevators. No. 2 red winter wheat had no trend available. Soybean meal, f.o.b. at processing plants, was $538.40 per ton for 48% protein.
Cotton futures wavered in intraday trade, but settled slightly lower as the market continues to correct following the recent rally to 4-month highs. December new crop cotton gained 17 to 72.90, and the March contract fell 8 to 72.89.
Gold futures ended a touch lower Friday as some investors opted to pare their risk exposure ahead of the month's end, while others were concerned by losses in equities. December gold fell $1.10 to $1,711.90, December silver closed at $32.03, down 4.2 cents
Crude oil futures settled modestly higher Friday as the market fixated on the potential track of Hurricane Sandy as it heads up the East Coast. December crude gained 23 cents to $86.28 a barrel, November gasoline gained 3.57 cents at $3.09 a gallon, November distillates 3.57 cents at $3.09 a gallon.
Natural-gas futures settled Friday at their lowest level in three weeks, as the market anticipated Hurricane Sandy would cause power outages along the East Coast. November Natural gas fell 3.4 cents to $3.40.
On Wall Street stocks finished the week flat, recovering from moderate declines as bargain hunters rushed in to buy Apple and other stocks recently battered by disappointing results. The Dow gained 3 to close at 13,107, the Nasdaq closed at 2,987, up 1 and the S&P 500 fell one to 1,411.