July hogs closed sharply higher on the session yesterday and up near the highs of the day, and posted the highest close since April 19th as the market found carryover support from higher cattle prices. Ideas of higher slaughter levels on Saturday due to higher demand level, plus news that cash markets in the Midwest traded steady to $1.00 higher was thought to be supportive for hog futures. Weakness in the pork product markets late Wednesday and reports of higher weights may have helped to limit the advance. July hogs closed higher for five sessions in a row in spite of hefty average slaughter weights. There is also some uncertainty if the more active slaughter pace for the weekend can continue for a few weeks and help clean-up any backlog of market-ready hogs in the country. Pork cutout values released after the close yesterday came in at $82.68, up 75 cents from Wednesday and up from $80.12 the previous week and would be the highest pork market since March 16th. Slaughter came in at just 410,000 head, which was below market expectations and could add to the sluggish demand concerns. This brings the total for the week so far to 1.642 million head, down from 1.659 million head last week at this time but up from 1.624 million head a year ago. The CME Lean Hog Index as of May 15th came in at 79.88, up 52 cents from the previous session and down from 79.74 the week before.