Market News

Feedlot cattle sell sharply higher

A light cattle trade took place in most areas on Wednesday afternoon. Live sales ranged from 130.00 to 131.00 in Kansas, $3.00 to 4.00 higher than last week’s weighted average, and 132.00 in Texas, 4.00 higher than last week. Nebraska feedlot operators sold cattle from 131.00 to 133.00, 2.00 to 4.00 higher. Asking prices have climbed to around 134.00 plus in the South, and 214.00 plus in the North. The Fed Cattle Exchange Internet Auction had 4,446 cattle listed and sold only 701 head with a weighted average price of 128.62. The cattle kill was estimated at 115,000 head, the same as last week, but an increase of 6,000 head from last year.

Boxed beef cutout values were lower on choice and near steady on select on light to moderate demand and light offerings. Choice boxed beef was down .82 at 215.17, and select is .20 lower at 202.00.

Live cattle contracts on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange settled .30 to 1.15 higher. The complex spent much of the morning without a lot of action, but word of cattle trading in the South at higher prices was supportive and resulted in a higher close.

Feeder cattle traded unchanged to .77 higher as they gave back some following an early spring rally. Feeders opened higher but turned lower, before closing higher and ending off the morning highs.

Feeder cattle receipts at the Ozarks Regional Stockyards at West plains, Missouri totaled 3,178 head on Tuesday. Compared to last week, steer and heifer calves weighing less than 600 pounds trended 4.00 to 10.00 higher with heavier weight calves trading steady to 4.00 higher. Yearlings were not well tested except for the eight weight steers 6.00 higher. Demand was very good on a moderate supply. Optimism continues to grow in the cash market as warmer temperatures and rains across the area have increased for grass fed calves. Feeder steers medium and large 1 averaging 614 pounds brought 177.54 per hundredweight. 520 pound heifers traded at 148.10.

Lean hogs settled .12 to 1.60 lower with triple digit losses from May to August with practical spot June unable to finish above 70.00. Such defensive action suggests that bullish patience is running thin relative to the surfacing of more constructive fundamentals according to DTN’s John Harrington.

Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota direct trade closed .88 lower at 55.13 weighted average on a carcass basis, the west was down .84 at 55.15, and nationally the market was down .68 at 54.57. Missouri direct base carcass meat price closed 1.00 to 2.00 lower from 47.00 to 48.00. Illinois direct hogs on a live basis were mostly steady from 34.00 to 42.00. Sows steady 31.00 to 44.00.

The pork carcass cutout value was down .68 at 74.79 FOB plant.

This week’s hog kill could be on par with last week’s. But seasonally, next week could be the largest kill level, then trend down from there in choppy fashion, yet still remain larger than the prior season.

The Wednesday hog kill was estimated at 442,000 head, 4,000 more than last week, and 11,000 greater than last year.


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