Feeder cattle sell higher at Monday auction

Feedlot country was quiet on Monday afternoon following the distribution of the new showlists. The late July offering appears to be somewhat larger than last week. Although asking prices are not well defined, a few producers have priced cattle around 168.00 to 170.00 in the South and 255.00 to 270.00 in the North. The slaughter totaled 111,000 head, 4,000 below last week, and 7,000 smaller than a year ago.

Boxed beef cutout values were higher on moderate demand and light offerings. Choice beef was up 1.92 at 259.30, and select cuts were 1.84 higher at 256.17.

Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle contracts were 1.70 higher to 72 lower. The nearby contracts opened significantly higher but quickly attracted long liquidation and speculative selling. The trade remained volatile through much of the session. Perhaps not surprising given the thin air that typically accompanies record prices according to John Harrington at DTN. Floor talk is blaming nervous ties to wholesale beef demand. Can it be sustained at current levels? August settled .05 lower at 159.05, and October was down .72 at 159.07.

[Read more...]

Closing Grain and Livestock Futures: July 28, 2014

Sep. corn closed at $3.67 and 3/4, up 4 and 3/4 cents
Aug. soybeans closed at $12.36 and 1/2, up 24 and 1/4 cents
Aug. soybean meal closed at $402.80, up $4.80
Aug. soybean oil closed at 36.52, up 43 points
Sep. wheat closed at $5.34 and 3/4, down 3 and 1/4 cents
Aug. live cattle closed at $159.05, down 5 cents
Aug. lean hogs closed at $123.67, up 5 cents
Sep. crude oil closed at $101.67, down 42 cents
Oct. cotton closed at 65.36, up 20 points
Aug. Class III milk closed at $21.60, up 15 cents
Aug. gold closed at $1,303.30, unchanged
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 16,982.59, up 22.02 points

Learning more about Indiana Beef

Rick Davis of Thorntown, Ind. is the president of the Indiana Beef Cattle Association.  During a recent conversation with Brownfield, Davis outlined some of the activities the association does on behalf of its members.

On the consumer side, he says some of what they do is education through promotional efforts in different parts of the state.  On the member side – they work to keep producers educated about the issues that could affect their operations.

To learn more about the Indiana Beef Cattle Association visit www.indianabeef.org.

AUDIO: Rick Davis, President – Indiana Beef Cattle Association (6:30mp3)

 

Monday midday cash livestock markets

It is a typical Monday in cattle country with the main item of business the distribution of the new showlists. Bids and asking prices are not fully established so far today. Last week’s business exploded on Thursday and Friday with some Northern dressed trade and Southern live deals as much as 10.00 higher than the previous week’s trade.

Boxed beef cutouts are significantly higher in the morning g report. Choice beef is up 1.39 at 258.77, and select is up 1.71 at 256.04.

Feeder cattle receipts at the Joplin Regional Stockyards today totaled 4,000 head. Compared to last week, steer and heifer calves were firm to 5.00 higher. 600 to 700 pound yearling steers were 10.00 to 15.00 higher. Demand was good and the supply was moderate. Feeder steers, medium and large 1 weighing 500 to 600 pounds traded from 250.00 to 277.50. 5 to 6 weight heifers brought 232.00 to 236.00.

Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota direct trade opened 3.54 lower at 121.83 weighted average on a carcass basis, the West is down 3.36 at 121.84, and the East is 1.28 lower at 121.14. The Missouri direct base carcass meat price is steady to 4.00 lower from 116.00 to 118.00. Barrows and gilts at Midwest markets are steady to 4.00 lower from 86.00 to 95.00.

The pork carcass cutout value is up 1.73 at 133.52 FOB plant.

The recent combination of sharply higher beef prices and significantly lower pork prices should soon cause retailers and food managers to “wake up” to the superior value and featuring opportunity of pork.

From Friday to Friday, the pork carcass value collapsed by $5.77, especially hammered by a $23.14 implosion in the belly primal. While tomatoes may still be slow in ripening, it would appear bacon and lettuce supplies must be more than abundant.

Potterton to head U.W. Short Course

U.W. Madison photo

U.W. Madison photo

Jessie Potterton has been named director of the U.W. Madison Farm and Industry Short Course.  She has held the position on an interim basis for the past 12 months and will formally begin her new duties on October 1st.

Potterton was CALS director of prospective student services from 2011 until becoming the interim short course director.  Prior to that she spent five years as U.W. Extension 4-H Youth Development Educator in Lafayette County.

Cash cattle sell for record high prices

The cash cattle market was quiet on Friday afternoon and business was essentially completed for the week. Trade volume totals remained rather modest and the assumption can be made that area packers are formulating enough cattle to at least cover short term slaughter needs. It has been quite a week with both live and dressed sales marked as much as 10.00 higher than the previous week with price levels in all regions shattering the record highs established a few weeks ago. Live sales ended the week 161.00 to 165.00 and dressed sales at 257.00 to 262.00. The weekly cattle kill was estimated at 571,000 head, 6,000 smaller than last week, and 69,000 head less than 2013.

The cattle on feed report appears to be generally neutral, coming in close to expectations. On feed numbers were down 2%, placements in June off 6% and June marketing’s down 2%. For more on the story and analysis visit the news section of the website.

Boxed beef cutout values were higher on moderate demand and light offerings. Choice beef was up 1.82 at 257.38 and select was 1.49 higher at 254.33.

Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle contracts settled 70 to 255 higher. Strong gains were seen in front month August futures as traders focused on the strong fundamental support seen through the complex .Futures once again set new historical records due to the explosive action in the cash market and technical buying August settled 2.55 higher at 159.10 and October was up 1.75 at 159.80.

Feeder cattle ended the session 92 to 152 points higher as moderate to strong buyer support redeveloped in the feeder cattle futures despite mixed trade activity early in the session. The focus on the cattle on feed and cattle inventory reports helped to drive prices higher. August settled .92 higher at 218.25 and September was up 1.20 at 219.25.

Feeder cattle receipts at Missouri auctions this week totaled 17,342 head. Compared to last week, feeders sold steady to 5.00 higher, with several mid-weight calves fully 10.00 higher. Markets started the week very mixed and few local auctions quoted sharply lower prices, others wasted no time in starting the week’s price rally with several posting instances of 10.00 to 15.00 higher. The supply was light to moderate and demand was good to very good. Feeder steers medium and large 1 averaging 619 pounds averaged 243.28 per hundredweight. 624 pound heifers brought 223.69. [Read more...]

Closing Grain and Livestock Futures: July 25, 2014

Sep. corn closed at $3.63, up 1 and 1/2 cents
Aug. soybeans closed at $12.12 and 1/4, up 4 and 3/4 cents
Aug. soybean meal closed at $398.00, up $2.70
Aug. soybean oil closed at 36.09, down 15 points
Sep. wheat closed at $5.38, up 9 and 1/4 cents
Aug. live cattle closed at $159.10, up $2.55
Aug. lean hogs closed at $123.62, up 42 cents
Sep. crude oil closed at $102.09, up 2 cents
Oct. cotton closed at 65.16, down 124 points
Aug. Class III milk closed at $21.45, down 24 cents
Aug. gold closed at $1,303.30, up $12.50
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 16,960.57, down 123.23 points

July 1 cattle inventory lowest in more than 40 years

USDA reports the total U.S. cattle and calf inventory on July 1, 2014 was 95.000 million head, down 3% from the last report in 2012 and the lowest July 1 total since the series of reports started in 1973. The report was suspended in 2013 due to government sequestration. All cattle and calves on feed for slaughter were reported at 11.600 million head, a 6% decrease.

All cows and heifers that have calved came out at 39.000 million head, 2% lower than two years ago, with beef cows at 29.733 million head, down 3%, and milk cows at 9.267 million, up 1%. All heifers weighing 500 pounds and heavier were pegged at 14.900 million head, 5% below the previous report, with beef replacement heifers at 4.100 million head, 2% lower, milk replacement heifers at 3.900 million head, a decline of 5%, and other heifers at 6.900 million head, a drop of 7%.

Steers weighing 500 pound and heavier were 13.500 million head, down 4%, with bulls in the same weight class at 1.900 million head, statistically unchanged. Calves weighing less than 500 pounds came out at 25.700 million head, 4% lower.

The 2014 calf crop is projected at 33.600 million head, 1% less than 2013 and down 2% from 2012. Calves born during the first six months of the year were 24.300 million head, a decrease of 2% from a year ago and 3% below two years ago.

Cattle placements down 6%

According to USDA, cattle placements on feed during the month of June were slightly lower than expected.

Placements last month were 1.455 million head, down 6% from June 2013 and below Dow Jones’ average estimate for a 4.4% decline. Cash prices are at record levels and feed costs are down, but feeder cattle supplies are extremely tight and pasture conditions have improved. Most of the placements were heavier weight cattle, weighing more than 700 pounds: cattle and calves weighing less than 600 pounds were 400,000 head and 600 to 699 pounders were 245,000 head, while the 700 to 799 pound category was 320,000 head and cattle weighing more than 800 pounds were 490,000 head.

Marketings came out at 1.847 million head, 2% less than last year and in-line with expectations, and the lowest fed cattle marketings for the month of June since the series of reports started in 1996.

The total number of cattle on feed in the U.S. on July 1 was 10.127 million head, 2% lower than a year ago.

Other disappearances were 75,000 head, a 19% year to year increase.

The report generally looks neutral.

Friday midday cash livestock markets

USDA Mandatory is reporting a moderate to active cattle trade on very good demand in Kansas on Friday. Live sales are trending 9.00 higher than last week with sales ranging from 164.00 to 165.00. Trading is light in Nebraska on very good demand. Live sales are steady to 3.00 higher than Thursday’s sales at 165.00. In Colorado live sales are 1.00 higher than Thursday’s trades at 166.00. Prices in all regions this week have shattered the record established a few weeks ago.

Boxed beef prices were significantly higher in the morning report with the choice up 1.74 at 257.30, and select up 1.80 at 254.68.

Feeder cattle receipts at Missouri auctions this week totaled 17,342 head. Compared to last week, feeders sold steady to 5.00 higher, with several mid-weight calves fully 10.00 higher. Markets started the week very mixed and few local auctions quoted sharply lower prices, others wasted no time in starting the week’s price rally with several posting instances of 10.00 to 15.00 higher. The supply was light to moderate and demand was good to very good. Feeder steers medium and large 1 averaging 619 pounds averaged 243.28 per hundredweight. 624 pound heifers brought 223.69.

Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota direct trade are 2.80 lower at 123.48 weighted average on a carcass basis, the West is down 2.33 at 123.61, and in the East the market is 1.23 lower at 122.29. Missouri direct base carcass meat price is steady from 116.00 to 122.00. Barrows and gilts at Midwest markets are fully steady on a live basis from 88.00 to 96.00.

The pork carcass cutout value is 1.56 higher FOB plant at 132.87.

Iowa’s cash hog trade actually bounced some higher yesterday with the dressed weighted average closing $1.18 higher. If the cash index can start to stabilize, shorts would be quickly motivated to cover the deep discounts of nearby lean futures.