Direct cash cattle markets are quiet at midday on Wednesday. There are a few bids at $125 on the live basis in Kansas and Texas and $200 to $202 dressed in Nebraska, and we could start to see more as the day moves on but that may depend on how the futures trade goes. Asking prices are around $130 in the South and $207 in the North. Widespread business isn’t expected until Thursday or Friday.
Boxed beef at midday was modestly higher with Choice up $.58 at $192 and Select $.20 higher at $189.42.
Today’s cattle slaughter is expected to be around 121,000 head, which would be up on the week but down on the year.
At Tuesday’s feeder auction in Kingsville, Missouri, steers weighing less than 650 pounds were $6 to $12 higher, while steers over 650 were $3 to $7 higher, and heifers were mostly $3 to $5 higher. Supply and demand were both called good to very good. Steers and bulls made up most of the feeder run with 57% of the steers weighing more than 600 pounds. 600 to 699 pound feeder steers sold at $175 to $191 and 520 to 591 pound feeder heifers ranged from $130 to $147.
For the cash hog trade at midweek, we’re looking at a combination of slow country receipts and generally lackluster wholesale demand for pork products. Still, there are some firm quotes for delivery next week as packers try to stay ahead of the seasonal tightening of market ready numbers.
The Eastern Cornbelt direct hog market was the only major direct market reporting, up $.54 with the base price range on barrows and gilts at $72 to $75.21 for a weighted average of $75.06. USDA says there were no hogs traded in the Western Cornbelt or Iowa/Southern Minnesota. Butcher hogs at the terminals are steady to a dollar higher at $49.50 to $54. The Missouri Direct base carcass meat price is steady at $68 to $73 with supply and demand both called light to moderate and sows steady at $48 to $63. Illinois direct sows are steady at $47 to $64 on moderate demand and offerings with boars at $10 to $35.
The average Iowa/Southern Minnesota hog weight of 276.2 pounds was up a half pound on the week but down one point one pounds on the year.
According to USDA, fresh pork cuts were not reported at midday on Wednesday.
Today’s hog slaughter is projected at 427,000 head, which would be a little lower than last week but above last year. Saturday’s slaughter is estimated at 110,000 head.