Market News

Midday cash livestock markets

Direct cash cattle trade activity has been sluggish this week.  A few bids have surfaced in the South at $103 live, but little to no activity in the North.  Asking prices are around $106 to $108 live in the South and we’ve yet to see any prices surface out of the North.  At least some trade is expected to develop today, but it is also possible any business could hold off until after the On Feed report Friday. 

Boxed beef is firm to higher at midday on good demand for moderate offerings.  Choice is $1.71 higher at $217.58 and Select is $.59 higher at $208.19.  The Choice/Select spread is $9.39. 

At the Hub City Livestock Auction in South Dakota, compared to last week steers 750 to 800 pounds were mostly steady, 850 to 1050 pounds were mostly $2 to $4 lower.  The best test on heifers 850 to 900 and 950 to 1000 pounds were mostly steady.  The USDA says demand was good to very good for another large offering of yearlings, all of which sold on an active market.  There were many strings featured in the sale, both steers and heifers, with most coming off grass.  Quality was mostly attractive, and flesh was mostly light to moderate.  Feeder supply included 56 percent steers and 100 percent of the offering was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 861 to 887 pounds brought $135 to $146.25 and feeder steers 901 to 939 pounds brought $135.50 to $142.50.  Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 853 to 892 pounds brought $129 to $136.30 and feeder heifers 951 to 988 pounds brought $125.75 to $132. 

Cash hogs opened steady to firm with a fairly light run so far today.  Packers have been moving big numbers just about every day this week.  The market remains stuck in this current pattern of back and forth as it weighs the strength of demand with the heavy supplies of market-ready barrows and gilts.  Daily slaughter totals have been pushing higher.  While that’s helping to alleviate some of the pressure on the production system, it’s also adding more pork to the market.  This week’s Export Sales report from the USDA showed a decline in pork sales for the week.  Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct are $.63 higher with a base range of $60 to $68 for a weighted average of $64.98; the Western Corn Belt is $.24 lower for a weighted average of $63.99; the Eastern Corn Belt had no comparison but a weighted average of $65.10.  The Iowa/Southern Minnesota was not reported due to confidentiality. 

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at $28. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were steady with good demand for light to moderate offerings at $19 to $23.  Barrows and gilts were $1 higher with good demand for moderate to heavy offerings at $40 to $45.  Boars ranged from $1 to $3. 

Pork values are firm at midday – up $.77 at $89.74.  Picnics, loins, butts, ribs, and bellies are higher to sharply higher.  Hams were lower. 

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