U.S. lean-hog futures closed mostly higher following a tightening of government pork-production forecasts, which reflect the stress of the severe U.S. drought. August hog futures, which expire Tuesday, were unchanged at 91.87, the October contract, the most actively traded, fell 42 to 75.60
U.S. live-cattle futures closed mostly lower Friday on a lack of eager buyers in cash markets, while feeder cattle were lifted by losses in corn futures. August live cattle fell 82 to $120, August feeders finished up 37 at $129.
At the livestock auction held Thursday at Smithfield a total of 333 cattle and no goats were sold. Slaughter cows trended steady to 3.00 to 5.00 higher and feeder calves were 4.00 to 16.00 higher when compared to last week’s sales.
US grain and soybean futures ended mixed, with soybeans climbing on tighter supply estimates and strong demand. Corn and wheat futures slumped, with wheat falling on larger production and inventory forecasts than traders anticipated. Corn was pressured by disappointment that a government forecast for domestic corn inventories didn't come in any lower than analysts expected. November soybeans finished up 12 ¾ at $16.44; December corn finished down 15 1/4 at $8.08, September wheat in Chicago finished down 27 at $8.86, and September wheat in KC fell 22 ½ to $8.92.
No. 2 yellow shelled corn trended 9 to 15 cents lower when compared to last report. Prices ranged $7.99-$8.76 at feed mills and $8.10-8.49 at elevators. No. 1 yellow soybeans trended 26 cents lower and were $17.18 at processors, and $16.63-$17.19 at elevators. No. 2 red winter wheat was without an available trend as of this report. Prices were $7.74-$8.05 at the elevators. Soybean meal, f.o.b. at processing plants was $586.10 per ton for 48% protein.
Cotton futures extended declines in the last few minutes of trade Friday to settle at a one-week low. The market was taken by surprise after USDA revised US and world production and ending stocks higher in its monthly supply/demand report. October cotton fell 269 to 72.90, and new crop December dropped 293 to 73.02.
Gold futures ticked higher Friday, as some investors bet China was more likely to ease monetary policy after data showed the country's economy continues to slow. December gold rose $2.60 to $1,622.80, and September silver closed at $28.06, down $3.50.
Crude futures fell Friday after a key energy organization lowered its estimate for the growth of oil consumption world-wide. September crude fell 49 cents to $92.87 a barrel, September gasoline rose 3.1 cents to $3.00 a gallon, and September distillates fell 2.45 cents to $3.02 a gallon.
Natural gas futures tumbled to a one-month low Friday as forecasts showed cooler temperatures ahead that may lower gas usage by power plants. September Natural gas fell 17.5 cents to $2.77
On Wall Street the S&P 500 finished slightly higher on Friday to run its streak to six straight sessions, but activity was light, and gains were slight as the market enters a seasonally slow period. The Dow gained 42 to close at 13,207, the Nasdaq closed at 3,020, up 2 and the S&P 500 gained 3 to 1,405.