Market News

Midday cash livestock markets

Direct cash cattle trade is off to its typically quiet start to the week.  Bids and asking prices have yet to surface as buyers and sellers are busy taking inventory and preparing for the week ahead.  It’s likely significant trade volume will be delayed until midweek or later.  Business last week, for the most part, held out until Friday, and it was worth the wait.  Dressed deals in the North were at mostly $300, $5 higher than the prior week’s weighted averages.  Live deals in the South were at mostly $186, $2 higher than the previous week’s business.  This week could be a repeat, especially with Cattle on Feed numbers out Friday. 

Boxed beef is higher at midday on solid demand for moderate offerings.  Choice is $.80 higher at $314.25 and Select was $3.95 higher at $301.35.  The Choice/Select spread is $12.90.

In Nebraska last week, steers and heifers were unevenly steady.  The USDA says demand was moderate to good for calves and feeders.  There was also good demand for cow/calf pairs as some cattlemen were working to fill their summer grass needs.  Carryover for hay stocks in Nebraska is up 79 percent on the year. Feeder supply included 72% steers and 85% of the offering was over 600 pounds.  Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 600 to 700 pounds averaged $299, down a little more than $6 on the week, but more than $30 higher than year-ago levels.  Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 600 to 700 pounds averaged $279.79, up more than $7 on the week and up more than $30 from year-ago levels.

Cash hogs had no comparison at midday with very light negotiated purchases.  It’s a Monday and cash hog business typically starts off the week slow.  Hog slaughter is running about 0.5% higher than it was last year at this time.  Processors have had to be a little more aggressive in their procurement efforts overall to move needed numbers.  Demand for U.S. pork on the global market remains strong and domestic demand is seeing a boost as summer grilling season is just around the corner.  Both are supportive to prices.  The industry continues to monitor the availability of market-ready hogs and hog weights.

Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at $50. At Illinois, slaughter sow prices were steady with moderate demand for moderate offerings at $35 to $47.  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 were higher at midday – up $1.63 at $102.48.  Ribs were sharply higher.  Bellies, picnics, hams, and loins were higher.  Butts were firm.

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