Futures prices of agricultural commodities, pressured by excessive supplies, continued to nosedive Monday.
The Commodity Research Bureau’s indexes of livestock prices and grain prices, already at their lowest levels in seven years, slid even further Monday as cattle, hogs, corn and soybeans fell to life-of-contract lows.
A key factor for the fall in livestock prices, according to Chuck Levitt, a livestock analyst in Chicago with Shearson Lehman Bros., has been the selective buying approach taken by retailers.
“They’re basically buying beef and pork with the profit margin in mind,” said Levitt. “They’re making record wide margins on beef, and pork is at very wide margins.”
Pork bellies for delivery next month were steady while those for delivery next year were lower.
Wheat settled 2 cents lower to 1 cents higher with the contract for delivery in September while corn was unchanged to 3 cents lower with September at $2.40 a bushel. Oats were 3/4 cent to 2 cents lower with September at $1.29 a bushel and soybeans were 2 cents to 7 1/2 cents lower.