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Cattle, hog futures close lower on Wednesday

Direct cash cattle trade ended the day quiet and cash hogs closed lower.

At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live cattle futures were down and feeders were sharply lower in thin trade ahead of the day off for Thanksgiving. That was despite the higher than a week ago direct business that developed during the session. December live was down $.45 at $153.35 and February was $1.00 lower at $155.42. January feeders were $2.42 lower at $179.25 and March was down $2.22 at $182.35.
There was light direct cash cattle trade Wednesday with light movement in the north at $245 dressed, which is $3 higher than last week’s weighted average.  Some cattle traded in the South for $154 to $155, which is roughly $4 higher than last week’s weighted average.

At the Kingsville Livestock Auction in Kingsville, MO, compared to last week, steers and heifers sold steady. Demand was good for moderate supply of mostly calves of good quality. The latest Cattle on Feed report showed some solid proof of small numbers of cattle as drought has caused some culling of the nation’s cow herd.  Receipts were down on the week, but up on the year. 40 percent of the feeder supply was steers and 31 percent was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 Feeder steers 643 pounds sold at 171.50 and feeder steers 654 pounds sold $183. Medium and Large 1 Feeder heifers 550 to 576 pounds sold $154 to $172 and feeder heifers 682 to 687 pounds sold $160.50 to $168.00.

Boxed beef cutout values closed sharply lower with Choice down $4.07 at $252.56 and Select down $.85 at $233.33.  The Choice/Select Spread is $19.23

Estimated cattle slaughter is 129,000 head, unchanged on the week and up 7,000 on the year.

Lean hog futures were lower on technical selling ahead of the monthly livestock slaughter numbers. December was down $.30 at $83.95 and February was $1.27 lower at $88.80.

Cash hogs closed sharply lower. The bulk of this week’s businesses has already wrapped up with the Thanksgiving holiday.  Processors weren’t aggressive in their procurement efforts.  Demand for US pork on the global market remains strong despite concerns of a slowing economy.

Barrows and gilts at the National Daily direct closed $.62 lower with a base range of $81 to $87.50 with a weighted average of $84.68. Iowa/Southern Minnesota closed $.84 lower at $86.61; the Western Corn Belt closed $.85 lower at $86.51; the Eastern Corn Belt did not report due to confidentiality reasons.

At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were $2 lower with light demand for light offerings at $49 to $61.  Barrows and gilts were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $58 to $68.  Boars ranged from $30 to $35 and $9 to $19. 

Pork values closed sharply lower – down $1.94 at 89.36.  Butts, loins, ribs, hams and bellies were lower and sharply lower with picnics higher.

Estimated hog slaughter is 457,000, down 31,000 on the week and 12,000 on the year.

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