Market News

Live cattle futures mixed ahead of direct cash trade

At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live cattle ended the day mixed ahead of widespread direct business.  Feeder cattle were higher, supported by the day’s lower move in corn.  October live cattle closed $.22 higher at $107.10 and December live cattle closed $.12 lower at $111.57.  September feeder cattle closed $.17 higher at $141.67 and October feeder cattle closed $1.10 higher at $143.70. 

Direct cash cattle trade activity was quiet through Tuesday.  Bids have been elusive.  Early asking prices in the South are at $105 to $107 live, and they have yet to surface in the North.  Significant trade volume could be delayed until later in the week. 

At the Tri-State Livestock Auction in Nebraska, compared to the most recent sale, most steers and heifers under 600 pounds were steady to $4 lower.  However, steers, 450-pounds were $3 higher.  Steers weighing 750 pounds were $5 higher.  Demand was good.  Receipts were up from two weeks ago and on the year.  Feeder supply included 64 percent steers and 29 percent of the offering was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 510 to 545 pounds brought $165 to $173 and feeder steers 893 to 895 pounds brought $1136 to $137.50.  Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 452 to 496 pounds brought $141.50 to $156 and feeder heifers 504 to 545 pounds brought $145 to $152.25. 

Boxed beef closed lower on light demand for moderate offerings.  Choice closed $1.12 lower at $216.09 and Select closed $1.48 lower at $206.28.  The Choice/Select spread is $9.81. 

Estimated cattle slaughter is 120,000 head – up 2,000 on the week and even on the year. 

Lean hog futures closed mostly lower on spread adjustments with the lower cash trade during the session along with sharply higher wholesale values.  October lean hogs closed $1.07 higher at $65.70 and December lean hogs closed $.52 lower at $63.05. 

Cash hogs closed mixed with solid negotiated numbers.  Packers continue to move big numbers and Tuesday was no exception.  While there is optimism demand will continue to push higher, especially as China, South Korea, and Japan have banned pork imports from Germany, the heavy supply situation adds uncertainty to prices.  That will continue to make it difficult for prices to move higher for a significant period of time. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $.72 higher with a base range of $47 to $65 for a weighted average of $58.89; the Iowa/Minnesota closed $1.06 lower for a weighted average of $60.44; the Western Corn Belt closed $1.34 lower for a weighted average of $60.16; the Eastern Corn Belt closed $1.62 higher for a weighted average of $57.54.  

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are $2 lower at $28. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were steady with good demand for moderate to heavy offerings at $11 to $23.  Barrow and gilt prices were $6 higher with good demand for moderate to heavy offerings at $35 to $41.  Boars ranged from $1 to $3. 

Pork values closed sharply higher – up $4.55 at $84.26.  Hams and loins were both sharply higher.  Ribs, butts, bellies, and picnics were also higher. Estimated hog slaughter is 485,000 head – up 20,000 on the week and down 7,000 on the year. 

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