Market News

Midday cash livestock markets

Another round of live trade has developed in parts of cattle country.  Live deals in Nebraska and Kansas are at $110, steady with some of yesterday’s business and about $1 higher than last week’s weighted averages.  Asking prices are firm around $112 to $115 live and $172 dressed.  There was a light to moderate trade that took place yesterday across most of cattle country.  Southern live deals range for $105 to $110, $1 higher to $4 lower compared to the previous week’s weighted averages.  Northern dressed business was at mostly $170, about $5 lower than the previous week’s weighted average basis in Nebraska. 

Boxed beef is sharply higher again at midday on heavy demand and offerings.  Choice is $11.23 at $235.59 and Select is $9.86 higher at $225.57.  The Choice/Select spread is $9.02. 

Receipts are a big part of the story for cattle markets this week – with just 561 head offered at the Sioux Falls Regional Cattle Auction in South Dakota, those numbers well off the previous week and year.  The USDA says offerings of feeder cattle are limited in most areas following the recent meltdown in the cattle futures complex.  Producers who are well-positioned with feed have opted to hold on to their cattle instead of selling off.  Feeder steers this week were not well tested and feeder heifers are $10 to $16 lower.  Demand is light as producers are unsure about the direction of the market.  Feeder supply included 91 percent heifers and 100 percent of the offering was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 feeder steers averaging 652 pounds brought $120.  Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 738 to 740 pounds brought $110.50 to $112.50 and feeder heifers 848 pounds brought $104. 

Cash hogs opened higher with strong negotiated numbers.  The supply of ready barrows and gilts is more than ample right now and packers are taking advantage of it.  They’ve bid up in order to pull hogs ahead likely as a preventative measure in case of a potential shut-down of a packing facility because of the coronavirus/COVID-19 outbreak.  Domestic demand has remained strong and that’s helping to keep prices supported.  Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct opened $.87 higher with a base range of $48 to $58 for a weighted average of $54.25; the Iowa/Minnesota opened $.95 higher for a weighted average of $54.61; the Western Corn Belt opened $.89 higher for a weighted average of $54.53.  The Eastern Corn Belt was not reported due to confidentiality. 

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at $36. 

Pork values opened sharply higher – up $.7.54 at $80.92.  All of the primals were higher to sharply higher – including a more than $36 jump in the bellies. 

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