June hogs closed moderately higher during Monday's session after first posting a new contract low. Continued weakness in the cash market helped to pressure June hogs early in the session. Pork cut-out values were higher last week, led by a recovery in the rib market, which was thought to provide some support and may help to boost packer margins if packers can buy cash hogs cheaper while pork continues to push seasonally higher over the near-term. The sluggish pace of pork movement through the marketing pipeline, plus negative profit margins from the packer, are seen as negative forces. Weights are also high so there could be a large amount of hogs backed-up in the country. Pork cutout values released after the close yesterday came in at $78.45, down 41 cents from Friday but up from $77.94 the previous week. Either pork values need to show some significant seasonal strength, or cash values need to be lower, in order to improve packer margins. The CME Lean Hog Index as of May 3rd came in at 80.92, down 78 cents from the previous session and down from 82.68 the week before. Slaughter came in a little higher than expected at 413,000 head, which some traders feel could be a sign of stronger demand from packers. This was up from 410,000 head last week and up from 376,000 head last year ago at this time. Slaughter has been coming in below expectations during the past few weeks, and this sluggish demand tone has been seen as a key negative factor for the market.