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Cattle, hog futures lower at midweek

At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live and feeder closed lower watching corn and waiting for the rest of the week’s direct cash business develop. June live cattle closed $1.22 lower at $135.02 and August live cattle closed $1.22 lower at $135.02.  Mya feeder cattle closed $3.37 lower at $157.35 and August feeder cattle close $4.20 at $168.95. 

There were just a handful of direct cash cattle trades reported on Wednesday.  Dressed deals in Nebraska were at $230.  Those are marked for delayed delivery.  Live deals in Iowa at $146.  Asking prices are at $140 live in the South and $232 dressed in the North, asking prices in the North are at $145 to $146 live.  Look for more business to pick up over the balance at the week. 

At the Kingsville Livestock Auction in Missouri, compared to last week, steers and heifers were mostly steady except for several loads of 850-to-900-pound higher quality steers that were $3 to $6 higher.  The USDA says demand was good for a moderate to heavy supply which included over 10 loads of yearlings that saw active bidding.  Unweaned calves that were offered saw little discount if they were good quality.  Receipts were up on the week and the year.  Feeder supply included 61% steers and 52% of the offering was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 502 to 536 pounds brought $187.50 to $205 and feeder steers 864 to 891 pounds brought $155.85 to $159.10.  Medium and Large 1 feed heifers 450 to 487 pounds brought $174.50 to $186 and feeder heifers 686 to 699 pounds brought $154.25 to $160. 

Boxed beef closed lower to sharply lower on light demand for solid offerings.  Choice closed $2.26 lower at $261.91 and Select closed $3.91 lower at $252.32.  The Choice/Select spread is $9.59. Estimated cattle slaughter 125,000 head – even on the week and up 5,000 on the year. 

Lean hog futures closed lower on follow-through selling and long-term demand concerns.  May lean hogs closed $1.02 lower at $104.17 and June lean hogs closed $.82 lower at $110.35. 

Cash hogs closed mostly higher with a solid negotiated run. Processors were aggressive in their procurement efforts and bid up to move their desired numbers.  The industry continues to monitor the availability of market-ready hogs.  Demand for US pork on the global market and domestically has been strong.  And while that is expected to continue, there are long-term concerns adding pressure to prices. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $1.70 higher with a base range of $95 to $111 and a weighted average of $104.73; the Iowa/Minnesota closed $.44 higher with a weighted average of $109.24; the Western Corn Belt closed $.05 lower with a weighted average of $108.94.  Prices at the Eastern Corn Belt were not reported due to confidentiality. 

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are $2 lower at $66. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were steady with light demand for light to moderate offerings at $72 to $85. Barrows and gilts were steady with light demand for light to moderate offerings at $60 to $69.  Boars ranged from $40 to $45 and $20 to $25. 

Pork values closed about steady – down $.04 at $105.51.  Bellies were sharply lower.  Loins were lower.  Picnics, butts, ribs, and hams were all higher. Estimated hog slaughter is 482,000 head – down 1,000 on the week and even on the year. 

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