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LIVESTOCK-CME live cattle, lean hogs ease; cold storage adds versus year earlier

By Christopher Walljasper

CHICAGO, Nov 22 (Reuters) - Live cattle futures at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange eased on Tuesday on softer holiday demand, after climbing to three-week highs a day prior due to tighter-than-expected cattle supplies, traders said.

"With a short week, you wont have to have as aggressive a cash trade to fill out the packer needs for the week. So that takes the spark away from hogs and cattle," said Matt Wiegand, risk management consultant at FuturesOne.

Most-active CME February live cattle futures eased 0.300 cent to 156.425 cents per pound after reaching 156.875 cents. Nearby December live cattle added 0.250 cent to finish at 153.800 cents per pound.

CME January feeder cattle lost 0.950 cents to 181.675 cents per pound.

Boxed beef values firmed, with Choice cuts adding $1.06 to $256.63 per cwt, while select cuts gained 95 cents to $234.18, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said.

U.S. frozen beef stocks in cold storage through October 31 fell 3% from September to 509.949 million pounds, the USDA said in a report released after the markets closed. Frozen beef is up 8% from the same month a year earlier.

CME lean hog futures also trimmed on Tuesday, lacking direction ahead of the USDA's cold storage report that showed lower month-over-month supplies but a sizeable increase compared to 2021.

U.S. frozen pork belly stocks of 40.196 million pounds as of October 31 were up 246% from last year, the USDA said.

"Bellies are much more plentiful, which should keep the cutout from getting too carried away," Wiegand said.

The most-active February lean hogs contract settled down 0.075 cent at 90.075 cents per pound. (Reporting by Christopher Walljasper)

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