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Cattle futures sharply higher due to lower moves in corn

 At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live and feeder cattle futures were sharply higher with feeders in the lead on the lower move in corn. That helped contracts shrug off the recent trend in beef and the week-to-date’s lower direct cash business. August live was up $1.40 at $171.15 and October was $1.72 higher at $174.67. August feeders were $2.95 higher at $230.67 and September was up $3.10 at $234.52. 

There was a round of light of mostly live business reported in the North on Thursday.  Deals were marked at $180 to $186, some dressed trade was reported, but it was very light and not enough to establish a trend. There were also a few deals reported in Kansas at mostly $180, also about steady with the week’s previous business.    

At the, Winter Livestock Auction in Dodge City, Kansas, compared to last week, feeder steers 850 pounds to 950 pounds sold steady. There weren’t enough steers 400 pounds to 850 pounds for a market test, and not enough heifers for a market test, but there were approximately 117 heifers weighing 714 pounds that sold for $233. The USDA says demand was good. Slaughter cows sold steady and slaughter bull sold $3 to $4 lower. Receipts were down on the week and year. Feeder supply included 82 percent feeder cattle and 96 percent of the offering was over 600 pounds. Medium and Large 1 Feeder Steers 832 to 834 pounds brought $221 and feeder steers 858 to 870 pounds brought $223.75 to $227 with an average price of $224.86. Medium and Large 1 Feeder heifers 628 pounds, thin fleshed, brought $232.50 and feeder heifers 710 to 717 pounds, fancy, brought $223.  

Boxed Beef cut out values closed mixed with light to moderate box movement. Choice was $.22 higher at $334.47 and Select was $.45 lower at $303.80.  The Choice/Select Spread is $30.67. Estimated cattle slaughter is 125,000 head, down 1,000 on the week, but up 2,000 on the year. 

Lean hog futures were sharply lower on technical selling, the weak midday pork, and the mostly lower cash during the session. July was $2.90 lower at $91.85 and August was down $2.80 at $89.97.  Cash hogs closed sharply lower.  After a couple of big days with larger runs at higher prices, processors pulled back on their procurement efforts.  This will likely be the case for the rest of the week.  Overall, demand for US pork on the global market remains relatively strong and all eyes are on domestic demand, especially after California’s Department of Food and Ag updated guidance on Prop 12 implementation yesterday.  Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct are $1.55 lower with a base range of $75 to $99 with a weighted average price of $94.79; Iowa/Southern Minnesota closed $1.01 lower with a weighted average price of $95.96; the Western Corn Belt closed $1.65 lower with a weighted average price of $95.28.  The Eastern Corn Belt did not report due to confidentiality reasons. 

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady in Dorchester, Wisconsin and Garnavillo, Iowa at $72 and $74.  And are higher in Red Oak, Iowa at $58.  At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $19 to $29.  Barrows and gilts were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $50 to 460.  Boars ranged from $15 to $25 and $5 to $10.  Pork values closed $.42 higher at $96.50.  Butts, ribs and bellies were sharply higher, loins, picnics and hams were lower. Estimated hog slaughter is 463,000 head, up 2,000 on the week, but down 5,000 on the year. 

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