Commodities: Yum, Papa John's slide, but so do commodity prices

| by S.A. Whitehead
Commodities: Yum, Papa John's slide, but so do commodity prices

iStock photo.

The week after Memorial Day brought lower prices on most pizza commodities, with even a slight dip in vehicle fuel prices once the weekend was over. However, half of the brands monitored here also followed that downward trend in trading last week, taking some of the joy out of those commodities savings. 


Cheese closed Friday at $1.60, down a penny from the previous week and 7 cents lower than a month ago. 


Compared to last week, cash bids for wheat were mixed, from 32 3/4 cents lower to 12 1/4 cents higher. Last week's export sales and shipments of wheat totaled 1.1 and 16.3 million bushels, with total shipments down 15 percent.  

Kansas City U.S. No. 1 Hard Red Winter, ordinary protein rail bid was 5 1/2 cents higher, from $6.48 1/2-$6.63 1/2 per bushel. Kansas City U.S. No. 2 Soft Red winter rail bid was not quoted.  

St. Louis truck U.S. No. 2 Soft Red Winter terminal bid was 2 to 4 cents lower, from $5.36-$5.43 per bushel. Minneapolis and Duluth U.S. No. 1 Dark Northern Spring, 14.0 to 14.5 percent protein rail, was 32 3/4 to 37 3/4 cents lower, from $7.37-$7.42 per bushel. Portland U.S.Soft White wheat rail was 8 1/4 cents lower to 12 1/4 cents higher, from $5.80-$5.95 per bushel.

Gasoline and diesel fuel

Natural gas

Natural gas spot prices fell at most locations for the report week ending on Wednesday, May 30. The Henry Hub spot price fell from $2.86 per million British thermal units (MMBtu) last Wednesday to 2.83/MMBtu yesterday.

At the New York Mercantile Exchange, the June 2018 contract expired last Tuesday at $2.875/MMBtu. The July 2018 contract price decreased to $2.885/MMBtu, down 7 cents over the seven days. 

Net injections to working gas totaled 96 billion cubic feet (Bcf) for the seven-day period ending May 25. Working natural gas stocks are 1,725 Bcf, which is 31 percent lower than the year-ago level and 22 percent lower than the five-year (2013-17) average for this week.

The natural gas plant liquids composite price at Mont Belvieu, Texas, rose by 14 cents, averaging $8.83/MMBtu for the seven days ending May 30. The price of natural gasoline, propane, and butane fell by 4, 1 and 2 percent, respectively. The price of ethane and isobutane rose by 6 and 13 percent, respectively.

According to Baker Hughes on May 22, the natural gas rig count decreased by two over the previous week to 198. The number of oil-directed rigs rose by 15 to 859. The total rig count increased by 13, and it now stands at 1,059.

Pizza company stocks

Domino's and Papa Murphy's were the two gainers among the four pizza stocks monitored by this website over the last week's trading. Over the seven-day period, Domino's gained 60 cents in value to close at $252.85 Friday. Meanwhile, smaller take-n-bake brand, Papa Murphy's came in at $5.54 Friday at the close, down 19 cents over the previous week's closing value. 

The other two brands under our weekly surveillance took hits last week, with Pizza Hut parent, Yum Brands falling $1.75 to close Friday at $81.91, and Papa John's continuing its slide to close Friday at $51.26. That's $1.55 lower than the $52.81 the brand fetched on the NASDAQ the previous Friday. 

Photo: iStock

Topics: Business Strategy and Profitability, Cheese, Delivery, Dough, Equipment & Supplies, Financial Management, Food & Beverage, Operations Management

Companies: Papa John's, Papa Murphy's, Yum! Brands, Pizza Hut, Domino's

S.A. Whitehead

Award-winning veteran print and broadcast journalist, Shelly Whitehead, has spent most of the last 30 years reporting for TV and newspapers, including the former Kentucky and Cincinnati Post and a number of network news affiliates nationally. She brings her cumulative experience as a multimedia storyteller and video producer to the web-based pages of and after a lifelong “love affair” with reporting the stories behind the businesses that make our world go ‘round. Ms. Whitehead is driven to find and share news of the many professional passions people take to work with them every day in the pizza and quick-service restaurant industry. She is particularly interested in the growing role of sustainable agriculture and nutrition in food service worldwide and is always ready to move on great story ideas and news tips.

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