February hogs closed sharply higher on the session yesterday, with the market posting the highest close since November 4th. The market had closed near the lows of the day for the previous five trading sessions but closed near the highs of the session On Monday. Cash hogs traded steady to $0.50 lower on the session and are called a bit lower again today. Some traders feel that February is finding support from ideas that the market is holding a much smaller than normal premium to the cash market for this time of the year. Weakness in cash prices has made a negative impact but some traders see pork supply peaking soon, which may be providing some underlying support. A breakdown in the US Trade data released last week showed US pork exports for September reaching 441.7 million pounds, up 37.4% from last year. These figures also showed that China imported 82.2 million pounds for the month, up from 65.5 million in August and 26.5 million last year. This would be a new record high, surpassing the Chinese pork import demand leading up to the 2008 Olympic Games. The CME Lean Hog Index as of November 10th came in at 87.08, down 74 cents from the previous session and down from 89.94 the week before. The estimated hog slaughter came in at 430,000 head yesterday. This was unchanged from last week but up from 424,000 head a year ago as this time. Pork cutout values released after the close yesterday came in at $90.07, down 46 cents from Friday and down from $92.85 the previous week. This is the lowest pork market since June 8th.