Livestock and meat prices were sharply higher Monday on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.
Cattle prices were supported partly by technical factors, such as trends on price charts, said Tom O'Hare, a livestock analyst in New York with Smith Barney. He noted that cash markets were mostly steady to weaker.
However, he said, meat packers appear to be eager buyers and don't expect cash prices to fall, and retail prices for beef fell in September, which should boost demand at the retail level.
Pork prices also were supported by trends on price charts, O'Hare said.
The market remained concerned that meat packing plants might be closed because of labor problems, but buyers outweighed sellers nevertheless, and pork bellies for delivery in February and March posted an advance of 2 cents a pound, the limit allowed by the exchange.
Anticipation that cash hog prices would advance on Tuesday encouraged buying throughout the pork complex, analysts said.
Wheat and soybean futures prices were lower and corn was higher on the Chicago Board of Trade.