Cattle futures higher waiting for direct cash business to develop
At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live and feeder cattle were higher ahead of the week’s direct cash business. October live cattle closed $.17 higher at $145.85 and December lives closed $.30 higher at $151.50. September feeder cattle closed $1.65 higher at $187.12 and October feeders closed $1.52 higher at $189.55.
DiDirect cash cattle trade activity was relatively slow on Wednesday. There was some scattered trade reported throughout cattle country, but not near enough to establish a trend. Live deals in the South were at $141 and dressed deals in the North ranged from $232 to $238. Asking prices will likely be restated around $143 to $146 live in the South and $240-plus dressed in the North. Significant trade volume is expected to develop over the balance of the week.
At the Kingsville Livestock Auction in Missouri, compared to last week feeder steers were steady to $6 higher. Feeder heifers were steady. Receipts were down on the week and the year. Feeder supply included 35% steers and 75% of the offering was over 600 pounds. Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 705 to 734 pounds brought $182.25 to $190 and feeder steers 875 pounds brought $177.50. Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 666 to 696 pounds brought $179.50 to $185.75 and feeder heifers 718 to 719 pounds brought $170.60 to $174.
Boxed beef closed lower with light demand for moderate offerings. Choice closed $1.10 lower at $264.34 and Select closed $1.23 lower at $237.86. The Choice/Select spread is $26.45. Estimated cattle slaughter 126,000 head – even on the week and up 6,000 on the year.
Lean hog futures were supported by stronger cash and wholesale business. October lean hogs closed $1.47 higher at $98.05 and December lean hogs closed $.72 higher at $88.42.
Cash hogs closed higher with another large negotiated run. Packers increased their efforts to meet their desired numbers and bid up. Demand for US pork on the global market has been strong, helping provide relatively strong price support. The industry continues to monitor the availability of market-ready hogs, which has declined in some areas. Hog weights are up slightly this week to 275.7 pounds and down 1.9 pounds on the year. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $2.15 higher with a base range of $114 to $136 with a weighted average of $131.34; the Iowa/Minnesota closed $.78 higher with a weighted average of $133.64, the Western Corn Belt closed $1.05 higher with a weighted average of $133.89; the Eastern Corn Belt had no comparison but a weighted average of $125.02.
Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets were steady in Dorchester, Wisconsin at $75 and $3 higher in Red Oak, Iowa at $77. At Illinois, slaughter sows were $2 lower with moderate demand for moderate to heavy offerings at $69 to $81. Barrows and gilts were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $77 to $86. Boars ranged from $55 to $58 and $10 to $20.
Pork values closed lower – down $2.68 at $118.47. Bellies were down more than $12. Butts, hams, and ribs were lower to sharply lower. Loins and picnics were higher. Estimated hog slaughter is 478,000 head – up 4,000 on the week and up 5,000 on the year.