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Cattle futures, lean hogs mixed to end the week

Chicago Mercantile Exchange live and feeder cattle futures were mixed ahead of the USDA’s Cattle on Feed report, which was out after Friday’s close. April live was down $.02 at $162.32 and June was $.47 lower at $156.40. April feeders were $.50 lower at $194.65 and May was down $.32 at $199.95.

Direct cash cattle trade ended the week quiet with the bulk of the business carried out earlier in the week. The majority of cash cattle trade this week has been at mostly $164 on a live basis and $264 dressed, both about $1 lower than last week’s weighted averages.

At the Apache Livestock Auction, in Apache Oklahoma, compared to last week feeder steers weighing 600 to 700 pounds $12 to $14 higher.  Feeder heifers steady to $1 lower.  Steer calves unevenly steady. Heifer calves steady to $3 lower.  Quality good to attractive with very good demand for thin fleshed steers. Slaughter cows steady to $2 higher.  Receipts were down on the week and year. 47 percent of the supply were steers.  60 percent of the offering was over 600 pounds.

Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 617 to 641 pounds brought $185 to $231 with an average price of $219.09 and feeder steers 851 to 861 pounds brought $171 to $174 with a weighted average price of $172.80.  Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 554 to 592 pounds brought $191 to $195 with an average price of $193.21 and feeder heifers 708 to 716 pounds brought $171 to $177.50 with an average price $174.98.

Boxed beef cutout values closed mixed with light to moderate box movement. Choice is $.60 lower at $283.35.  Select is $.68 higher at $272.44.  The Choice/Select Spread is $10.91. Estimated cattle slaughter is 113,000, down 1,000 on the week, but up 13,000 on the year.

Lean hog futures were mixed, mostly lower, on spread trade, pork demand uncertainties, and the steady to lower cash during the session. April was up $.42 at $79.87 and June was down $.15 at $93.32.

Cash hogs closed sharply lower. The cash hog market continues its inconsistent pattern.  Processors have moved large runs this week and could be at a point where they have their needed numbers so prices and negotiated purchases could fall back some.  There’s some broader market pressure.  While demand has held relatively strong, concerns about a slowing global economy could carry over to the cash hog market, weaken demand, and ultimately push prices lower.  Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct are $1.22 lower with a base range of $72 to $79 with a weighted average price of $77.61; Iowa/Southern Minnesota are $2.32 lower with a weighted average price of $77.04; Western Corn Belt was $3.19 with a weighted average price of $76.76; The Eastern Corn Belt did not report due to confidentiality reasons.

Butcher hogs are steady in Red Oak, Iowa at $40 with Dorchester, Wisconsin, and Garnavillo, Iowa closed. Pork values closed $3.54 sharply lower.  Loins, butts, hams and bellies were sharply lower with picnics and ribs higher. Estimated hog slaughter is 472,000, down 8,000 on the week, but up 1,000 on the year.

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