Market News

Feeder cattle pressured by higher corn

At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live cattle were mixed, and feeders were lower watching the corn and direct business.  October live cattle were down $0.30 at $143.65 and December lives were down $.05 at $149.90. September feeder cattle were down $.32 at $182.57 October feeder cattle were down $.22 at $185.47.

There was a light to moderate direct cash cattle trade that took place on Thursday.  Live deals were at $135.50 to $136 in the South, $.50 to $1 higher than both the rest of the week’s sales and last week’s business.  Deals in the North were at $145 live and $227 dressed.  Look for a little more business to take place before the end of the week.  So far this week, live deals in the South have been at mostly $135, fully steady with last week’s weighted averages.  Live deals in the North have been at mostly $140, while Northern dressed business, has had a full range of $225 to $230. 

At the Mitchell Livestock Auction in South Dakota, compared to last week there was no trend on feeder steers and lighter steers were met with a higher undertone.  Steers over 1000 pounds were lower.  Heifers 700 to 900 pounds were steady, and heifers 900 to 950 pounds were $5 lower.  The USDA says demand was good and there were a few load lots available.  Receipts were down significantly on the week and down on the year.  Feeder supply included 32% steers and 98% of the offering was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 787 to 797 pounds brought $180 to $186 and feeder steers 808 to 842 pounds brought $173 to $178.85. Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 732 to 739 pounds brought $171 to $179.50 and feeder heifers 903 to 942 pounds brought $152.75 to $160.50. 

Boxed beef closed lower on light demand for moderate offerings.  Choice closed $1.66 lower at $266.28 and Select closed $.95 lower at $240.35.  The Choice/Select spread is $25.93. Estimated cattle slaughter 125,000 head – up 4,000 on the week and the year. 

Lean hog futures ended the day mostly higher, unwinding spreads.  October lean hogs closed $1.75 higher at $97.60 and December lean hogs closed $1.22 higher at $88.62.

Cash hogs closed mostly lower with a solid negotiated run.  Processors were moving big numbers again, but didn’t have to bid up on Thursday to make it happen.  Demand for US pork on the global market remains strong, but long-term demand concerns do creep in and put pressure on prices.  The industry is keeping a close eye on the availability of market-ready hogs. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $3.45 lower with a base range of $114 to $135 with a weighted average of $127.19; the Iowa/Minnesota closed $2.20 lower with a weighted average of $130.76; Western Corn Belt closed $2.90 lower with a weighted average of $130.29; the Eastern Corn Belt closed $.08 higher at $126.30. 

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady today at $75. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were steady with heavy demand for moderate to heavy offerings at $65 to $77.  Barrows and gilts were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $77 to $86.  Boars ranged from $45 to $55 and $10 to $20. 

Pork values closed weak – down $.69 at $124.80.  Ribs and butts were sharply lower.  Bellies and hams were lower.  Picnics and loins were higher. Estimated hog slaughter is 470,000 head – up 10,000 on the week and up 3,000 on the year. 

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