Direct cash cattle trade developed Thursday afternoon and activity may be nearly wrapped up for the week. There was light to moderate trade in the South at $114 to mostly $115 Live, down $2 from last week. Northern business was slower to get started but did turn moderate to active. Most of that dressed business was at $182 to $183, $4 to $5 lower than last week’s Nebraska weighted average. Pressure came from lower trade in the futures, declining wholesale prices, and hot temperatures around the major feeding areas.
Overall, almost 15,000 head traded in Kansas, roughly 7,000 head moved in Texas, and Nebraska sales were around 30,000 to 35,000 head. We could see some clean-up today but it looks like widespread activity is pretty much over.
Boxed beef has continued its recent trend, down again at midday on Friday with very light movement. Choice was down $2.47 at $183.56 and Select was $.13 lower at $173.29.
Near term market ready numbers for hogs appear to be adequate and packers haven’t found much resistance at lower prices lately, which is showing up at the major direct markets. The National Direct base carcass meat price was down $4.13 at $87.01 to $94 with the weighted average at $88.46. The Eastern Cornbelt was $2.26 lower at $87.01 to $87.69 for an average of $87.65, the Western Belt was down $3.48 at $90.88 to $94 with the average at $92.48, and Iowa/Southern Minnesota opened $3.26 lower at $91.50 to $94 for an average of $92.92.
Butcher hogs at the terminal markets are steady today with tops from $59 to $65. Here at the end of the week, it looks like some packers still need supplies for early next week, which may keep trade about where it is, at least for the terminals. Missouri Direct butcher trade was steady at $88 to $90 with sows steady to $3 lower at $40 to $45; supply and demand were both light to moderate. Illinois direct sows were $1 to $2 lower at $38 to $44 with a few up to $46 on light demand and light to moderate offerings.
Pork trade at midday was slow with light to moderate demand and offerings. Fresh loins were steady, 23 to 27 pound hams were $2 higher, 14 to 16 pound bellies were weak, lean trimmings were steady, and butts were not fully established.