Market News

A light day for livestock slaughter

There were just a few scattered bids in feedlot country on Thursday afternoon at 116.00 on a live basis and 186.00 dressed. Asking prices are around 122.00 live and 190.00 to 192.00 dressed. DTN reports that “a day without immigrants” worked to lower the total slaughter head count, but they stated they don’t see this having much impact on either cash or beef potential. The Saturday kill could be larger in order to make up for lost time. The kill totaled 96,000 head, 17,000 below last week, and 12,000 smaller than last year.

Boxed beef cutout values were higher on moderate demand and moderate to heavy offerings. Choice boxed beef was .88 higher at 189.22, and select was up 1.04 at 188.19.

Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle contracts settled mostly .07 to .25 lower with only a couple of early 2018 contracts .02 higher. The market held narrow trading ranges after moving back from moderate pressure early in the session. Trade volume remained sluggish.

Feeder cattle ended the session .30 to .47 lower and recovered some from strong early morning losses due to the overall lack of follow through seller support seen in the complex Thursday morning.

The Green City Livestock Auction at Greene City, Missouri had receipts of 3185 cattle on Wednesday. Compared to two weeks ago, steers and heifers sold 2.00 to 5.00 higher, spots of 7.00 to 9.00 higher on 6 to 7 weight steers and 5 to 6 weight heifers. Slaughter cows were 1.00 to 2.00 higher. There was excellent quality on offer throughout the day, long time weaned with at least two rounds of shots and in good condition. 374 head of feeder steers medium and large 1 averaging 674 pounds brought 145.10 per hundredweight. 116 heifers weighing 678 pounds averaged 125.89.

Lean hogs settled .15 to .95 lower after shifting higher and lower in a moderate trading range. The overall lack of direction in the complex continues to leave uncertainty in the entire market. With April futures now taking over as the front month contracts, there seems to be more pressure slowly developing across the market, according to DTN analysts.

Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota direct trade closed .17 higher at 74.34 weighted average on a carcass basis, the West was up .18 at 74.33, and nationally the market was .08 higher at 73.19. Missouri direct base carcass meat price was steady from 62.00 to 64.00. Midwest hogs on a live basis were steady to 2.00 lower from 46.00 to 50.00.

The pork carcass cutout value was down .78 at 84.43. FOB plant. Only the loin primal was higher.

For the week ending February 11th, Iowa barrows and gilts averaged 280.6 pounds, 0.8 pounds lighter than last week, and 2.8 pounds smaller than 2016.

The hog slaughter was estimated at 408,000 head, 34,000 less than last week, and down 30,000 from last year.

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