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Hog futures supported by higher pork values during the session

At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live cattle were mostly higher, and feeders were lower watching Friday’s direct business develop and waiting for the On Feed numbers. June lives were $.30 higher at $175.67 and August lives closed $.02 higher at $173.55. May feeders closed $.55 lower at $242 and August feeders closed $.80 lower at $253.50. 

There was a light to moderate direct cash cattle trade that took place Friday.  Live deals were marked at $182 in the South and $183 in the North, steady with the previous week’s weighted averages.  Dressed business was at $292 in the North, $1 lower than the prior week’s weighted average basis in Nebraska.

At the St. Onge Livestock Auction in South Dakota, compared to the most recent sale, feeder steers trended sharply higher.  Feeder heifers 600 to 650 pounds were mostly steady, heifers 650 to 700 pounds were $10 higher.  The USDA says demand was very good, especially for several packages of quality replacement heifers. The market was active with buyers in seats and online.  Most of the offering was home-raised and fully vaccinated with light to medium flesh, ready for grass.  Receipts were up from the most recent sale and down slightly on the year.  Feeder supply included 32% steers and 63% of the offering was over 600 pounds. Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 657 to 669 pounds brought $286 to $301.50.  Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 554 to 599 pounds brought $289 to $320 and feeder heifers 653 to 677 pounds brought $269 to $279. 

In Nebraska, all hay sales were steady on a very thin test.  The USDA says demand is light.  Several producers are large quantities of carryover.  In the central part of the state, Alfalfa, good, large rounds, brought $120.  Alfalfa, large rounds, brought $140.  Alfalfa, large rounds brought $110 to $140.  Prairie/Meadow Grass, premium, small squares brought $8.  In the East, pellets, 17% sun-cured brought $300.  In the Platte Valley area, Alfalfa, ground, brought $175.  Pellets, 15% sun-cured brought $350.  Pellets, 17% dehydrated, brought $350.  In the west, Alfalfa, premium, medium squares brought $200.  Alfalfa, ground, brought $150 to $180 

Boxed beef closed mixed on light and good demand for solid offerings.  Choice is $.13 lower at $295.67 and Select closed $1.56 higher at $290.89.  The Choice/Select spread is $4.84. Estimated cattle slaughter was 113,000 head – up 4,000 on the week and up about 4,500 on the year. Saturday’s estimated kill is 20,000 head – up 8,000 on the week and up about 8,000 on the year.

Lean hog futures were supported by the higher midday move in pork and technical buying. June lean hogs closed $2.12 higher at $104.82 and July lean hogs closed $2.12 higher at $106.47.

Cash hogs closed lower with a light negotiated run.  The cash hog market was pretty active this week as processors were bidding up to meet demand.  It appears they had needed numbers on hand, as it was a relatively slow Friday.  While the week’s export sales report was a marketing-year low, overall global demand for U.S. pork has been strong.  Domestic demand is also showing some strength as summer grilling season is just around the corner.  The industry continues to monitor the availability of market-ready hogs and hog weights. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $1.29 lower with a base range of $83 to $92 and a weighted average of $88.49; the Iowa/Minnesota closed $.57 lower with a weighted average of $90.02; the Western Corn Belt closed $1.96 lower with a weighted average of $88.07; the Eastern Corn Belt closed $.14 higher with a weighted average of $89.13.

According to the Weekly Feeder Pig report, early-weaned pigs were $3 lower and feeder pigs were $8 lower.  The USDA says demand was moderate for moderate offerings.  The weighted average for all early-weaned pigs was $46.35 and the weighted average for all feeder pigs was $95.18. 

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at midday at $52. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were steady with moderate demand for light offerings at $45 to $57.  Barrows and gilts were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $51 to $61.  Boars ranged from $18 to $28 and $8 to $15. 

Pork values closed firm – up $.13 at $100.09.  Ribs, butts, loins, and hams were higher.  Picnics and bellies were lower. Estimated hog slaughter was 480,000 head – down 4,000 on the week and up about 16,000 on the year.  Saturday’s estimated kill is 67,000 head – down 22,000 on the week and down about 18,000 on the year.

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