Cattle futures higher ahead of Cattle on Feed report
At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live and feeder cattle were higher ahead of Friday’s On Feed numbers. The report is relatively friendly for cash and futures markets as long as demand remains strong. October live cattle closed $2.10 higher at $187.07 and December live cattle closed $1.85 higher at $191.35. October feeder cattle closed $1.37 higher at $259.15 and November feeder cattle closed $.82 higher at $263.52.
It was a quiet Friday for direct cash cattle trade activity following the solid day of business on Thursday. For the week, dressed deals in the North were marked at mostly $292, and live business in the South was at mostly $183. Both were generally steady with the prior week’s weighted averages.
At the Ogallala Livestock Market in Nebraska, heifers were $4 to $8 higher. The USDA says demand was good. Heifers with an NHTC (Non-Hormone Treated Cattle) program were in high demand and brought $4 to $13 more. Steers weren’t well tested. Receipts were up from the previous sale and down significantly on the year. Feeder supply included 94% heifers and 98% of the offering was over 600 pounds. Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 651 to 687 pounds brought $259.50 to $268. Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 709 to 730 pounds brought $252.50 to $265.50 and feeder heifers 758 to 796 pounds brought $253 to $260.
In South Dakota, alfalfa hay is steady to weak. The UDSA says demand remains moderate for alfalfa as producers are trying to decrease the price of rations where possible. Demand for grass hay has been good as feedyards prep for calves. Some producers were able to get a 4th cutting of hay. Alfalfa, good, large squares brought $250. Alfalfa, fair/good, large rounds brought $200. Alfalfa, fair, large squares brought $200. Alfalfa, pellets, 17% sun-cured, brought $330. Alfalfa/grass mix, good, large rounds brought $185. Grass, good, large rounds brought $180 to $185. Millet, good, large rounds, brought $150.
In Missouri, fall haying has slowed down as attention has turned to harvest. Hay prices are steady and the overall supply is light to moderate. Demand has been moderate. Alfalfa, supreme, medium squares brought $250 to $300. Alfalfa, supreme, small squares brought $10 to $15. Alfalfa, premium, and medium squares brought $200 to $250. Alfalfa, good, large rounds brought $150 to $200. Alfalfa/grass mix, good/premium, small squares brought $5 to $10.
Boxed beef closed higher on solid demand for moderate offerings. Choice was $1.40 higher at $303.33 and Select was $1.43 higher at $280.43. The Choice/Select spread is $22.90. Estimated cattle slaughter was 114,000 head – down 7,000 on the week and down 12,000 on the year. Saturday’s estimated kill is 13,000 head – up 4,000 on the week and down 21,000 on the year.
Lean hog futures were lower pressured by the recent decline in pork values and long-term demand certainties. October lean hogs closed $1.42 lower at $81.52 and December lean hogs closed $2.30 lower at $72.17.
Cash hogs closed lower with a light negotiated run. The market was fairly strong the first half of the week. Processors likely had needed numbers in hand and didn’t get aggressive in their procurement efforts to finish the week. Demand for US pork on the global market remains relatively strong, as supported by a solid export sales report on Thursday. But there are concerns domestic demand could slow as the summer grilling season winds down. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct were $.50 lower with a base range of $73 to $80 and a weighted average of $77.59. No comparisons at the regional direct markets but weighted averages of $78.73 for the Iowa/Minnesota, $78.14 for the Western Corn Belt, and $76.98 for the Eastern Corn Belt.
According to the UDSA’s Weekly Feeder Pig Report, early-weaned pigs and feeder pigs were $3 per head higher. The USDA says demand was moderate for moderate offerings. The Total Composite cash range for early-weaned pigs was $10 to $29. The Total Composite Formula Range for early-weaned pigs was $27.48 to $50. The weighted average for all early-weaned pigs was $22.66 and the weighted average for all feeder pigs was $40.99.
Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at $58. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $29 to $40. Barrows and gilts were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $39 to $49. Boars ranged from $20 to $25 and $10 to $12.
Pork values closed lower – down $1.49 at $97.26. Bellies were sharply lower. Loins, ribs, picnics, and hams were lower. Butts were higher. Estimated hog slaughter was 478,000 head – up 2,000 on the week and 5,000 on the year. Saturday’s estimated kill is 121,000 head – down 29,000 on the week and down 21,000 on the year.