Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from slow to moderate on moderate demand in the Southern Plains and Nebraska through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was limited on light demand.
For the week, in a light test, live prices were $1 lower at $156/cwt. in the Southern Plains and Nebraska, and at $157-$159 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices in Nebraska were generally steady at $252; they were $252 in the western Corn Belt a week earlier.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was 87¢ lower Friday afternoon at $276.62/cwt. Select was 12¢ lower at $256.89/cwt.
Live cattle futures firmed Friday despite lower cash fed cattle prices and the seasonal turn lower in wholesale beef prices.
Live Cattle futures closed an average of 31¢ higher, except for 7¢ lower in near Apr.
However, higher Corn futures pressured Feeder Cattle futures an average of 86¢ lower (2¢ to $1.40 lower).
Corn and Soybean futures continued to gain Friday on the bullish WASDE.
Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 4¢ higher.
Soybean futures closed 3¢ to 8¢ higher through Aug ‘23 and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ lower.
Major U.S. financial indices rose again Friday with follow-through support from suggestions of easing inflation.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 112 points higher. The S&P 500 closed 15 points higher. The NASDAQ was up 78 points.
West Texas Intermediate Crude Oil futures (CME) closed $1.29 to $1.47 higher through the front six contracts.
Despite the significantly different year-over-year economic environment in December, consumers were slow to begin spending differently, according to data trends in Consumer Food Insights Reports from Purdue University’s Center for Food Demand Analysis and Sustainability.
The survey-based report assesses food spending, consumer satisfaction and values, support of agricultural and food policies and trust in information sources.
Household food expenditures were up more than 15% in December compared to the previous January. “But it is worth pointing out that our indicators like food security and food satisfaction have not similarly moved in any one direction, which is a good sign that wellbeing has likely not decreased on average,” says Jayson Lusk, the head and Distinguished Professor of Agricultural Economics at Purdue, who leads the center.
Consumer shopping behaviors were similar to July, but consumers were shopping at discount stores more and spending less on discretionary expenses, according to the latest report. As well, 22% said they were switching to cheaper brands, compared to 17% in July.
“Broadly speaking, consumers faced some budget constraints this holiday season,” Lusk says. “About a third said they were worried about being able to afford gifts, but this was far from the majority. When we compare responses to inflation in December to this past summer, most of these behaviors have not increased in frequency.”
The survey results also show that where people spend their dollars has not shifted. However, Lusk notes that the popularity of online grocery shopping appears to be declining, which raises questions about the lower limits of online food shopping and whether it was largely buoyed by the COVID pandemic.
Report data also suggests consumers could readily access most desired food items as supply chain disruptions eased.
“This year, chicken was the most reported item that people were unable to find at the grocery store,” says Sam Polzin, a food and agriculture survey scientist for the center and co-author of the report. “Given that we are in the middle of the deadliest bird flu outbreak, this is unsurprising.”