Cattle futures rebounded Thursday after the previous day’s breather, buoyed by the bullish Cattle report, positive weekly exports and notions this week’s cash fed cattle prices will be higher.
Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.03 higher ($1.80 to $2.68 higher).
Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.12 higher (80¢ to $1.325 higher).
Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in the Western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, with a few live sales at $154/cwt., according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade ranged from standstill to mostly inactive.
Last week, live prices were $156/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $153-$156 in Nebraska and $152-$157 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were $248.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was 3¢ higher Thursday afternoon at $265.10/cwt. Select was 88¢ higher at $253.66/cwt.
Corn futures closed 1¢ to 5¢ lower through Jly ’24.
KC HRW Wheat closed mostly fractionally lower to 3¢ lower.
Soybean futures closed 3¢ to 17¢ higher.
Major U.S. financial indices closed mixed on mixed economic news.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 39 points lower. The S&P 500 closed 61 points higher. The NASDAQ was up 385 points.
West Texas Intermediate Crude Oil futures (CME) closed 39¢-53¢ lower through the front six contracts.
Prices and profitability will favor cattle producers this year, according to CattleFax Analysts at Thursday’s Outlook Seminar, during the 2023 Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show in New Orleans.
Kevin Good, vice president of industry relations and analysis at CattleFax forecast the average 2023 fed steer price at $158/cwt., up $13 from 2022, with a range of $150 to $172/cwt. CattleFax projects feeder steers (800 lbs.) to average $195/cwt. with a range of $175 to $215/cwt. Steer calves (550 lbs.) are forecast to average $225/cwt., with a range of $200 to $245/cwt.
“Drought affected nearly half of the beef cow herd over the last year, exacerbating the liquidation in 2022,” Good says. “Drought improvement and higher cattle prices should drastically slow beef cow culling through 2023.”
Good forecast utility cows at an average of $100/cwt. with a range of $75 to $115/cwt. CattleFax projects bred cow prices an average of $2,100 per head for load lots of quality, running age cows; a range of $1,900 to $2,300.