Negotiated cash fed cattle trade and demand was moderate in the Southern Plains through Wednesday afternoon, with live prices steady with the prior week at $124/cwt.
That matched the weighted average price of $124 for the single lot (112 head) of Kansas heifers that sold in the weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. The total offering was 561 head (four lots).
Likewise, Choice steers and heifers sold steady at the fat auction in Tama, IA with 123 head of Ch 2-3 steers bringing an average price of $125.84 at an average weight of 1,472 lbs.
At Sioux Falls Regional in South Dakota, though, slaughter steers sold steady to $1 lower: 223 head of Ch 2-3 steers weighing an average of 1,569 lbs. and bringing an average price of $120.06.
Cattle futures softened Wednesday, led by Feeder Cattle, as the lack of detail and purchases associated with the phase-one trade deal between the U.S. and China continues to create unease in commodity markets.
Other than 2¢ higher in away Apr, Live Cattle futures close an average of 36¢ lower.
Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.07 lower (45¢ to $1.62 lower).
Wholesale beef values were firm on Choice and lower on Select, with light to moderate demand and offerings, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was 45¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $214.96/cwt. Select was $1.45 lower at $212.02.
Corn futures closed mostly unchanged to 1¢ lower.
Soybean futures closed fractionally lower to 2¢ lower.
Major U.S. financial indices closed mixed and little changed Wednesday. Competing news included more positive quarterly earnings than expected from IBM and the previous day’s confirmation of coronavirus in a Chinese traveler in Seattle.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 9 points lower. The S&P 500 closed fractionally higher. The NASDAQ was up 12 points.
Total pounds of beef in freezers as of Dec. 31 were 1% more than the previous month at 481.01 million lbs., but down 3% from the previous year, according to USDA’s monthly Cold Storage report released Wednesday.
Frozen pork supplies were up 1% from the previous month at 580.1 million lbs., which was 15% more than a year earlier.
Total red meat supplies in freezers were 1.01 billion lbs., up 1% from the previous month and up 5% from the prior year.
Total frozen poultry supplies were down 1% from the previous month but up 1% from a year earlier at 1.20 billion lbs.