Market News & Headlines >> USDA Expected to Report Hog Industry Expansion

Livestock analysts expect to see signs that several months of very profitable conditions have spurred U.S. hog producers to start expanding their herds in Friday afternoon’s quarterly USDA Hogs and Pigs Report.

The overall Sept. 1 U.S. hog herd, however, is expected to remain more than 3% smaller than a year earlier due to ongoing PEDv-related pig losses.

Trade estimates of All Hogs and Pigs as of Sept. 1 average 3.5% below a year earlier in a range from 2.5%-5.0%, while estimates of the supply of hogs kept for breeding average 1.4% higher than a year earlier in a wide range from 0.2% lower to 4.7% higher,  according to a survey of 12 livestock analysts by Bloomberg News. The trade consensus puts the Sept. 1 market hog inventory 3.6% lower than a year earlier in a range from 2.0%-5.1% lower.

Expectations for the June-August pig crop average 2.6% lower than a year earlier in a range from 1.0%-5.6% lower with PEDv outbreaks seen continuing to hurt breeding efficiency. Expectations for June-August farrowings average 0.5% above a year earlier, but the consensus on number of pigs per litter is 2.9% lower.

The hog market will also be watching fall and winter farrowing intentions for indications that producers have started to build the hog herd back up. Estimates of September-November farrowing intentions average 3.3% higher than a year earlier, while estimates of December-February intentions average 1.5% higher.