Livestock and pork futures prices were mixed to slightly higher Wednesaday on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, as a rally prior to a move to discourage the flow of cheaper pork into the United States faded.
The Commerce Department ruled at mid-morning that shipments of pork from Canada are being unfairly subsidized by the Canadian government. The ruling, if confirmed in a further review, would mean that Canadian pork will be subject to a trade tax equal to the Canadian subsidy.
But traders realized the ruling would have more of a long-term effect than a short-term impact, and many who were buying Tuesday sold back the contracts Wednesday to take a profit, said Chuck Levitt, a livestock analyst in Chicago with Shearson Lehman Brothers.
"The hogs had a choppy session. They didn't know which way to go," said Ron Garrison, a livestock analyst in St. Louis with Clayton Brokerage Co.
Cattle prices were supported by advanced prices on cash markets, but gains were tempered by traders buying near-term contracts while selling deferred contracts, Garrison said.