Cattle country is quiet today with bids and asking prices not fully established. Early summer cattle psychology will hinge on the success of beef clearance over the Memorial Day week end. Beef processors seemed successful in recovering decent margins last week. Furthermore, packers will be generally hungrier for live inventory as they schedule slaughter needs for the first full production week of June.
Boxed beef cutout values are higher, choice is up .75 at 195.38,and select is up 1.14 at 186.60.
Feeder cattle receipts at the Lexington, Nebraska Livestock Market totaled 1965 head last week. Compared to two weeks ago steers and heifers sold 4.00 to 5.00 higher on comparable offerings. Demand was good for all offerings. Weigh-up was in the buyers favor. Feeder steers, medium and large 1 averaging 928 pounds brought 152.00 per hundredweight. 689 pound heifers averaged 153.24.
Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota direct trade opened 1.54 lower at 81.65 on a carcass basis, the West was down 1.68 at 81.35, and the East was .46 lower at 80.07. Missouri direct base carcass meat price is steady to 3.00 lower from 77.00 to 78.00. Terminal hogs are fully steady from 54.50 to 56.50.
Firmer country hog prices on Friday suggest that pork processors went into the holiday break with a minimum of live inventory. Additionally, packers eager to compensate for the week’s slow production start will probably plan a Saturday kill in excess of 200,000 head.