Ron Plain and Scott Brown
University of Missouri
Iowa State University calculations estimated the typical market hog slaughtered in October was sold at a profit of $53.03 per head. October was the 11th consecutive profitable month for producers. The breakeven price, as calculated by Lee Schulz, was $51.80/cwt live or $69.07/cwt of carcass. Because of falling corn prices, the breakeven hog price is the lowest since September 2010.
The average retail price of pork during October was $4.149 per pound. That is down 6.6 cents from the record set the month before. October pork prices were up 34 cents compared to October 2013. Boneless ham prices in grocery stores were record high in October for the second consecutive month.
The average price for 51-52% lean hogs was $75.24 in October. That is up 88 cents from the month before and up $10.29 from a year ago.
Packer margins were squeezed a bit this week with a lower pork cutout value and steady hog prices. Friday morning's pork cutout value was $92.88/cwt FOB the plants, down $3.70 from the week before, but up $3.30 from a year ago. Loins, hams and bellies were all lower.
The national average negotiated carcass price for direct delivered hogs on the morning report today was $84.20/cwt, up 10 cents from last Friday and up $7.04 from a year ago. There were no negotiated prices reported this morning for the western corn belt or Iowa-Minnesota. The eastern corn belt averaged $84.09/cwt on today's morning report.
Peoria had a top live price today of $62/cwt. The top price Friday for interior Missouri live hogs was $60.75/cwt which was the same as the previous Friday.
This morning's hog carcass price averaged 90.7% of the cutout value.
Hog slaughter this week totaled 2.232 million head, up 0.6% from the week before, but down 4.9% compared to the same week last year. This was the 38th consecutive week with hog slaughter below the year-earlier level.
The average live slaughter weight of barrows and gilts in Iowa-Minnesota last week, 284.7 pounds, was down 1 pound from a week earlier, but up 3.5 pounds from a year ago. This is the closest the Iowa-Minnesota weight series has been to the year-earlier level since the week of October 5, 2013.
The December lean hog futures contract closed at $90.65/cwt, down $2.02 for the week. February hog futures ended the week at $90.45/cwt, down $2.30 from the week before. April hogs lost 90 cents this week to close at $92.95/cwt. The May contract ended the week at $94.80/cwt. June closed at $98.70/cwt.
Corn futures were lower this week. The December contract lost 9 cents this week to end at $3.7275 per bushel. March corn settled at $3.8525/bu, also 9 cents lower than the previous Friday. May corn futures settled at $3.9425/bu.