Market News

Hog futures supported by export sales numbers

At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live cattle closed lower, and feeders were mostly lower pressured by the higher corn.  October live cattle closed $2.72 lower at $124.50 and December live cattle closed $1.25 lower at $130.32.  October feeder cattle closed $.17 higher at $156.67 and November feeder cattle closed $.82 lower at $157.65. 

It was a quiet day for direct cash cattle trade following the moderate to active business that took place on Wednesday.  Asking prices for cattle left on showlists were around $126 to $127 live in the South and $201 plus dressed in the North.  It’s likely the bulk of trade has wrapped up for the week, but there could be a little cleanup business take place on Friday.  Southern live deals this week have been marked at $124 to $126, steady to $2 higher than last week’s weighted averages.  Northern dressed trade has been at $196 to mostly $200, $4 higher than last week’s weighted average basis in Nebraska. 

At the Sheridan Livestock Auction in Nebraska, there was a quality run of good feeder cattle.  Compared to last week, prices were mostly steady on most classes of feeder calves.  The market was active, and demand was moderate to good.  Receipts were up on the week and the year.  Feeder supply included 61% steers and 21% of the offering was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 554 to 597 pounds brought $165 to $178 and feeder steers 600 to 648 pounds brought $166 to $178.  Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 454 to 493 pounds brought $150 to $163 and feeder heifers 553 to 588 pounds brought $140 to $145.50. 

Boxed beef closed higher on moderate demand for moderate offerings.  Choice closed $1.26 higher at $284.89 and Select closed $.95 higher at $262.64.  The Choice/Select spread is $22.25.  Estimated cattle slaughter is 122,000, up 2,000 on the week and up 11,000 on the year. 

Lean hog futures ended the day higher, supported by the weekly export sales numbers and sharply higher pork values during the session.  December lean hogs closed $3.22 higher at $75.20 and February lean hogs closed $2.87 higher at $77.20. 

Cash hogs closed lower with a solid negotiated run.  The slide in the cash hog market continues, and processors are still moving their desired numbers at lower prices.  The industry is monitoring the availability of market-ready barrows and gilts.  Demand for US pork on the global market and domestically has been strong, but some long-term demand concerns are creeping in, and prices have been under pressure.  Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct ended the day $.67 lower with a base range of $61 to $65 and a weighted average of $62.52; the Iowa/Minnesota had a weighted average of $63.41; the Western Corn Belt had a weighted average of $63.31.  Prices at the Eastern Corn Belt were not reported due to confidentiality. 

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at $62. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were steady with good demand for moderate to heavy offerings at $50 to $60.  Barrows and gilts were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $39 to $46.  Boars ranged from $20 to $30 and $10 to $18. 

Pork values closed lower – down $.34 at $91.43.  Butts and picnics were sharply lower.  Bellies, hams, ribs, and loins were higher to sharply higher. Estimated hog slaughter is 483,000 head – up 10,000 on the week and down 2,000 on the year. 

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