Market News

Cattle trade no better than moderate

The feedlot cattle trade was at a standstill on Friday. Apparently the cash traders are content with the level of business generated on Wednesday. Trade volume looks no better than moderate, suggesting that some packers could once again find themselves short bought next Wednesday or there about, according to DTN. The weekly cattle slaughter is estimated at 585,000 head, 2,000 below the previous week, but 35,000 greater than 2016.

Boxed beef cutout values were firm to higher on moderate demand and offerings. Choice beef was up 1.07 at 233.43, select was up .61 at 214.48.

Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle contracts settled .12 to .52 higher on Friday, however the general tone of the market remained sluggish. Support came from the higher boxed beef values in the morning report and higher cash cattle prices at midweek.

Feeder cattle settled .20 to 1.07 higher with April up the most. The few buyers that did step back into the market on Friday quickly put initial price pressure behind them and focused on additional buyer support. There was underlying firm fundamental support in the complex in a light trade.

Feeder cattle receipts at Missouri auctions this week totaled 33,058 head. Compared to last week, feeder steers and heifers sold steady to 5.00 higher with the most strength on mid weights in the 450 to 650 pound range with conditions suitable for grazing. The feeder supply was moderate with the weights of the offering more spread out across the spectrum than last week. Demand overall was good as is typical for this time of year, flesh conditions over powering quality as buyers want cattle that will eat and add pounds. Feeder steers medium and large 1 averaging 622 pounds averaged 150.46 per hundredweight. 628 pound heifers traded at 131.67.

Lean hogs settled .40 to 1.35 lower with triple digit losses in the May through July contracts. Losses quickly developed as the overall lack of trade activity continued to pressure the overall market. Even though there was no news developing in market fundamentals, or technical, traders remained generally sluggish to step back into the complex at week’s end.

Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota direct trade closed 1.38 lower at 66.10 weighted average on a carcass basis, the West was down 1.43 at 65.97, and nationally the market was .92 lower at 65.34. Missouri direct base carcass meat price closed steady from 58.00 to 61.00. Illinois direct trade hogs on a live basis were steady from 40.00 to 49.00, sows 1.00 higher 28.00 to 41.00.

The pork carcass cutout value was .26 higher at 81.60 FOB plant.

Feeder pig receipts nationally this week totaled 94,758 head. Early weaned pigs were 3.00 per head lower. All feeder pigs traded 2.00 higher on light receipts. The demand was moderate for moderate offerings. All prices quoted are on a per head basis. Early weaned pigs, 10 to 12 pound basis 35.00 to 51.50. 40 pound pigs 70.00 to 82.50.

The weekly hog kill was estimated by USDA at 2,335,000 head, 17,000 more than last week and 147,000 greater than last year.

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