There was no cash fed cattle trade to speak of through Tuesday afternoon, as expected.
Cattle futures closed mainly narrowly mixed, amid likely profit taking and position squaring, buoyed by sharply higher outside markets.
After $1.00 lower in spot Feb, Live Cattle futures an average of 19¢ lower to an average of 11¢ higher.
Feeder Cattle futures closed from 27¢ lower to 30¢ higher.
Grain futures closed mainly higher on speculation that the U.S. and China will reach a resolution on trade sooner rather than later.
Corn futures closed 4¢ to 5¢ higher through Jul ’20 and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher.
Soybean futures closed mostly 10¢ to 12¢ higher.
Wholesale beef values were firm on Choice and lower on Select with light to moderate demand and moderate offerings, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was 28¢ higher Tuesday afternoon at $217.16/cwt. Select was 86¢ lower at $213.00.
Major U.S. financial indices closed sharply higher Tuesday, with investors cheering a tentative plan that would avoid another government shutdown.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 372 points higher. The S&P 500 closed 34 points higher. The NASDAQ was up 106 points.
Hay stocks Dec. 1 were 5.4 million tons less than the previous year (-6.4%) according to USDA’s February Crop Production report issued last week. The decline is accentuated in areas like the Southern Plains, where stocks are down a combined 16.0% in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas, according to Derrell Peel, Extension livestock marketing specialist at Oklahoma State University.
Since then, Peel says there’s little doubt winter storms chewed further into stocks.
“Around Oklahoma, anecdotal reports suggest that some producers are concerned about having adequate hay supplies for the winter and are finding, in many cases, that hay is in tight hands and, if available to purchase at all, is increasingly expensive,” Peel explains, in his most recent market comments.
If Art Douglas, professor emeritus at Creighton University is correct, El Niño conditions should provide above-normal precipitation to these areas through the summer.
“La Niña conditions are unlikely in the next eight months as the equatorial current shows only slow cooling,” Douglas explained during the recent 2019 CattleFax Outlook Seminar. “The residual warmth along the equator will lead to a wetter summer in the southern half of the U.S., while warm waters off the coast of Mexico will favor an active monsoon season in the Southwest.”