Curt Thacker - Dow Jones Newswires

via - Jan 8, 2013




MARKET TALK: US Hog Producer Losses Predicted for 4 More Months


15:29 EST - U.S. hog producers are expected to face losses for four more months, then return to profitability with the spring price rally, predicts Chris Hurt, agricultural economist at Purdue University. He predicts losses of about $15 per head for the first four months of 2013 but expects profits of about $10/head during the balance of 2Q and 3Q and break-even for 4Q. Smaller beef supplies are viewed as supportive for pork and hog prices as are expectations for pork exports to remain strong, Hurt says in his latest market outlook. Feed costs are a wild card for livestock producers.




MARKET TALK: McDonald's Wings Menu, Giving Flight to Chicken Wing Price?


14:44 EST - Prices for chicken wings have been on the rise due to a supply and demand imbalance, and McDonald's (MCD) isn't helping with plans to start testing "Mighty Wings" in Chicago this week, after a successful run in Atlanta last year. Sterne Agee's Lynne Collier said she thinks MCD's wings could be a national hit, but if they're too costly, MCD might go for a limited-time run like with its popular McRib. MCD up about 1% on day at $90.70.


MARKET TALK: Concern Varies on Yum's 4Q China Warning


7:53 EST - Yum Brands (YUM) shares down 4.7% premarket after warning late yesterday that 4Q sales in China would be down more than expected following negative publicity related to a government review on China poultry supply. Bullish Janney trims 4Q and 2013 EPS by a couple cents, but is otherwise unconcerned, noting that "issues such as the current one affecting China have generally in hindsight proven to be buying opportunities." Susquehanna is less upbeat, saying it's not confident China same-store sales will improve as quickly as guidance suggests, given a lack of more detail on why 4Q sales were already slowing sharply and potential catalysts to reinvigorate growth.


ConAgra Offering of 8.1 Million Shares Priced at 1.4% Discount


ConAgra Foods Inc. (CAG) said its offering of 8.1 million shares priced at a 1.4% discount of Monday's close. Shares, which were inactive premarket, were priced at $29.75, below the closing price of $30.17. The packaged-food company on Monday said it would sell about $240 million of its shares in order to help fund its proposed $4.95 billion acquisition of Ralcorp Holdings Inc. (RAH).




MARKET TALK: No Cattle Bids Yet, Late-Week Trade Expected


9:01 EST - No cash cattle bids have been established yet, and they may remain absent until near midday tomorrow since trading will likely occur late in the week. Cattle owners are asking $1.30 or more a pound on a live basis. Last week's sales occurred at mostly $1.28/lb in Texas and Kansas, up 1c from the previous week. In Nebraska, live sales were from $1.28-$1.285, up 1c, and dressed sales were at mostly $2.05/lb, up 2-3c. Choice beef prices yesterday fell 77c to $193.49 while select rose 38c to $182.60 on 207 loads.


MARKET TALK: Cash Hog Prices Predicted Flat-Weak


8:25 EST - Midwest direct hog markets are predicted flat to weaker amid concerns about sluggish domestic demand for the pork and poor processing margins. Plants that need several more loads of hogs fill slaughter schedules during the second half of the week may pay flat to near flat prices. Those that have most of the animals needed for this week may bid 50c to possibly $1 per hundredweight lower, say livestock dealers. Some packers may trim slaughter schedules later this or next week if pork sales are slow and margins remain thin. Terminal markets are called mostly flat.