Cattle futures rose the most in three weeks on speculation that U.S. beef demand will rebound as grocers replenish supplies after the Labor Day holiday weekend. Hogs also gained.
Wholesale-beef prices tracked by the government were down 2.5 percent this week, as of midday, a sign that retail buyers had finished stockpiling meat before Labor Day on Sept. 5, when outdoor grilling is popular in the U.S., according to Troy Vetterkind, the owner of Vetterkind Cattle Brokerage. Wholesale beef is up 11 percent from a year ago, and retail prices were at a record in July, U.S. Department of Agriculture data show.
“When we come back from the holiday, we’re going to run into tighter fed-cattle supplies, better beef demand and usage going into the fall,” Vetterkind said in a telephone interview from Chicago. “You can make a case for being friendly the cattle market.”