Market News

Midday cash livestock markets

Direct cash cattle trade activity remains quiet through midday.  Bids haven’t surfaced.  Asking prices are around $184-plus live in the South, while the North remains quiet.  Packer inquiry could start to pick yet today.  But if business follows the trend of recent weeks, significant trade volume is like going to be delayed until the latter half of the week.

Boxed beef is mixed at midday with light to moderate demand for light offerings.  Choice is $2.59 lower at $298.29 and Select is $1.31 higher at $292.65.  The Choice/Select spread is $5.64. 

At the Callaway Livestock Center in Missouri, steer calves 400 to 500 pounds were firm to $7 higher, steers 500 to 550 pounds were steady, steers 550 to 600 pounds were $5 to $10 lower, and steers 600 to 700 pounds were $2 to $7 lower.  Feeder heifers 400 to 450 pounds were firm, heifers 450 to 500 pounds were steady to $5 lower, and heifers 500 to 600 pounds were $5 to $8 lower. The USDA says supply was moderate to heavy, with demand moderate to good.  The market was active on lightweight calves under 550 pounds for grass, especially steer calves.  Pot loads of 8-weight steers also sold on an active market.  There were a lot of new crop calves in the offering, short-weaned, carrying flesh in small groups and packages.  Receipts were up on the week and the year.  Feeder supply included 57% steers and 44% of the offering was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 515 to 537 pounds brought $317 to $345 and feeder steers 850 to 891 pounds brought $231.75 to $241.25.  Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 502 to 548 pounds brought $273 to $291.50 and feeder heifers 651 pounds brought $251.25. 

Cash hogs have no comparison and light negotiated purchases. Demand is going to be the key to the cash hog market right now.  If processors are in need of hogs, it should keep them aggressive in their procurement efforts and bidding up.  Global demand for US pork has been strong, and domestic demand is also showing a spark of excitement.  Both are good for prices.  Availability of market-ready hogs and hog weights are also being monitored by the industry. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct had a base range of $85 to $89.50 and a weighted average of $86.14.  Prices at the Regional Direct Markets were not reported due to confidentiality. 

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at $52. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices are steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $47 to $59.  Barrows and gilts were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $51 to $61.  Boars ranged from $15 to $25 and $8 to $15.

Pork values are sharply lower at midday – down $4.44 at $99.16.  Bellies dropped nearly $24 to start the day.  Picnics, hams, and loins were lower.  Butts and ribs were higher.

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