With the exception of a few bids on the table in Kansas at 122.00 live, cattle country is quiet so far today. Asking prices are around 126.00 to 127.00 in the South and 203.00 to 205.00 in the North, Cattle futures were mixed near midsession. Significant trade volume is not expected until late in the week.
Boxed beef cutout values are mixed with the choice up .17 at 187.06, and select is down .07 at 181.03.
Loup City Commission Company, Loup City, Nebraska had cattle receipts of 2200 head on Tuesday. Compared to last week’s thin test, steers and heifers sold steady to 2.00 higher. Demand was good from a moderate size crowd. Several large strings of longtime weaned calves on hand. Most offerings were carrying a little extra flesh, but it didn’t deter feedlots from procuring cattle. 813 pound feeder steers average 143.17 per hundredweight. 677 pound heifers brought an average of 139.41.
Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota direct trade opened 2.49 higher on a carcass basis; the West is up 2.51 with both areas at 86.95, Eastern markets are .06 higher at 81.50. Missouri direct base carcass meat price is steady to 1.00 lower at 79.00. Terminal hogs are steady to 1.00 lower from 55.00 to 58.00 live.
If the pork cut-out is to break out of the current range, Easter ham buying will have to be a major driver. Many believe that hams should gain up to $5 over the next four weeks as the Easter holiday approaches.
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