Cattle futures close mostly higher
At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live and feeder cattle ended the day mostly higher watching corn and waiting for direct business to develop. June live cattle closed $.77 higher at $136.57 and August live cattle closed $.80 higher at $138.17. May feeder cattle closed $.02 lower at $171.45.
There was a light direct cash cattle trade in the South on Tuesday. Deals were at $140 to $141 live, $1 to $2 higher than last week’s weighted averages. The North has remained relatively quiet. Asking prices were at $142 live in the South, while the North has yet to be established. More business is expected to develop over the balance of the week.
At the Callaway Livestock Center in Missouri, there was a very light test of feeders to start the week. Steer and heifer calves under 600 pounds sold steady to firm with spots of $3 higher. Feeders 600 to 800 pounds were scarce and a potload of 902-pound steers sold with a firm undertone. The USDA says the market was active for the light offerings. Feeder supply included 53% steers and 29% of the offering was over 600 pounds. Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 453 to 491 pounds brought $193 to $201 and feeder steers 902 pounds brought $150. Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 477 to 493 pounds brought $170 to $182.50 and feeder heifers 728 pounds brought $150.25.
Boxed beef closed lower on light demand for light offerings. Choice closed $1.15 lower at $269.93 and Select closed $.25 lower at $259.21. The Choice/Select spread is $10.72. Estimated cattle slaughter 124,000 head – down 1,000 on the week and up 3,000 on the year. Monday’s cattle slaughter has been revised to 112,000 head.
Lean hog futures closed mixed on spread trade and profit-taking. May lean hogs closed $1.82 lower at $114.70 and June lean hogs closed $1.07 lower at $121.32.
Cash hogs closed sharply higher with a solid negotiated run. Processors were aggressive in their procurement efforts to be able to move their desired numbers. The industry is keeping a close eye on the availability of market-ready hogs. Demand for US pork on the global market and domestically has remained strong, providing price support at the farm level. However, there are long-term concerns which adds uncertainty to the market. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $4.35 higher with a base range of $94 to $111 and a weighted average of $101.57. Prices at the Iowa/Minnesota and the Western Corn Belt had no comparison but weighted averages of $108.77 and $108.31. Prices at the Eastern Corn Belt were not reported due to confidentiality.
Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at $80. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were $2 to $4 lower with moderate demand for moderate to heavy offerings at $76 to $90. Barrows and gilts were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $60 to $69. Boars ranged from $42 to $47 and $20 to $25.
Pork values closed $2.37 lower at $107.12. Bellies were sharply lower. Hams and picnics were lower. Butts, ribs, and loins were all higher. Estimated hog slaughter was 479,000 head – up 12,000 on the week and down 1,000 on the year.