Market News

Live cattle end the week mostly higher

At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live cattle ended the day mostly higher and feeder cattle were higher ahead of the on feed numbers, with support from higher boxed beef prices. The numbers were neutral to slightly friendly to prices.  Feeder cattle had additional support from the lower move in corn. August live cattle closed $.70 higher at $121.50 and October live cattle closed $.47 higher at $127.15.  August feeder cattle closed $1.87 higher at $160.07 and September feeder cattle closed $1.82 higher at $162.52. 

Direct cash cattle trade had a quiet end to the week.  Northern dressed business this week has had a wide range of $194 to $202, mostly $195, which is $3 lower than last week’s weighted average basis in Nebraska.  Southern live deals have been marked at $117 to $119, mostly $119, about $1 lower than last week’s business. 

At the MO-Kan livestock auction in Missouri, compared to last week feeder steers and heifers were steady.  The USDA says demand was moderate to good overall and the quality was attractive with mostly weaned calves offered, some in light flesh.  Supply was moderate.  Receipts were up on the week and down on the year.  Feeder supply included 58% steers and  29% of the offering was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 469 to 486 pounds brought $188 to $198.50 and feeder steers 562 to 596 pounds brought $171 to $180.  Medium and Large feeder heifers 512 to 541 pounds brought $152 to $165 and feeder heifers 565 to 593 pounds brought $147 to $158. 

At the Nebraska Hay Market compared to last week alfalfa and grass hay was mostly steady.  Ground and delivered forages and dehy alfalfa pellets were steady.  The USDA says demand dropped back a bit this week as spotty ran showers popped up.  Meadow and grass hay was in full production with many reports of tonnage equal to a little better than the previous year.  Most dryland field of alfalfa should have a good 3rd cutting with the recent rains.  Alfalfa, good large rounds brought $115.  Grass, good large rounds brought $105.  Prairie/Meadow grass, premium small squares brought $6.50 per bale.  Prairie/Meadow grass premium small squares brought $190 per ton.  Prairie/Meadow grass, good/premium large roudns brought $120 to $125.  In the East, alfalfa pellets 17% protein brought $330.  Brome grass, premium large rounds brought $160.  In the Platte Valley area, alfalfa, good large rounds brought $120 to $130.  Alfalfa, ground brought $165 and pellets 17% protein brought $280 to $290.  In the West, alfalfa, ground brought $188. 

Boxed beef closed firm to higher on moderate demand for moderate offerings.  Choice closed $.49 higher at $266.63 and Select closed $.17 higher at $249.94.  The Choice/Select spread is $16.69. Estimated cattle slaughter 114,000 head – down 4,000 on the week and up 3,000 on the year.  Cotton futures were mostly lower on spread trade and profit-taking.

Lean hog futures ended the day mostly higher, with support from the sharply higher pork values during the session.  August lean hogs closed $.70 higher at $107.35 and October lean hogs closed $.90 higher at $92.62. 

Cash hogs closed lower with light negotiated purchases.   Processors continue to monitor the availability of market-ready barrows and gilts.  Overall, the strong demand for US pork on the global market and domestically has been largely supportive to prices.  The industry does expect that to continue.  However, should a disruption occur, it would likely send prices tumbling. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $.72 lower with a base range of $103.50 to $109.75 and a weighted average of $104.59; the Iowa/Minnesota closed with a weighted average of $107.28; the Western Corn Belt had a weighted average of $107.26. 

The USDA’s feeder pig report has all early-weaned pig steady to $1 higher per head.  All feeder pigs were steady.  The USDA says demand was moderate for moderate offerings and receipts included 30% formulated prices.  The Total Compost cash range was $32 to $50 and a weighted average of $40.55.  The Total Composite Formula Range was $36.66 to $47.45 and a weighted average of $42.29.  The weighted average for all early-weaned pig was $41.15 and the average for all feeder pigs was $63.07. 

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at $75. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were $3 to $5 higher with good demand for moderate to heavy offerings at $64 to $76.  Barrows and gilts were $1 lower with moderate to good demand for heavy offerings.  Boars ranged from $45 to $50 and $10 to $12. 

Pork values closed about steady – up $.06 at $122.37.  Hams, loins, and picnics were all higher.  Bellies, ribs, and butts were lower. Estimated hog slaughter 434,000 head – up 7,000 on the week and down 34,000 on the year.  Saturday’s estimated kill is 29,000 head – up 17,000 on the week and down 194,000 on the year. 

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