Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains and Nebraska through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Elsewhere, it was mostly inactive on very light demand.
If the weekly Fed Cattle Exchange Auction is any indication, prices could end up significantly higher this week. There were 1,119 head offered (six lots) and none sold. However, three lots from the Southern Plains were passed on at $110/cwt., which was $3 higher than last week’s country trade in the region.
As well, slaughter steers sold $3-$6 higher and fat heifers traded $2 higher at Sioux Falls Regional in South Dakota. There were 502 head of Choice 3-4 steers weighing an average of 1,627 lbs. that brought an average of $107.23, which was $1-$2 higher than the previous week’s country trade.
Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed Wednesday.
Live Cattle futures closed an average of 35¢ higher, from 12¢ to 80¢ higher, except for 2¢ lower toward the back.
Feeder Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from an average of 22¢ lower to an average of 38¢ higher.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was 59¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $222.84/cwt. Select was 9¢ lower at $208.46.
Corn futures closed mostly 2¢ to 5¢ lower through Sept ‘21, and then fractionally lower to 1¢ lower.
Soybean futures closed mostly 6¢ to 10¢ higher.
U.S. financial indices closed narrowly mixed Wednesday, as investors appeared to take a breather, although major tech stocks bounced back from the previous session’s selloff.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 23 points lower. The S&P 500 closed 27 points higher. The NASDAQ closed 232 points higher.
Customer transactions at major U.S. restaurant chains continue lower year over year but stabilized in October, according to The NPD Group (NPD).
Specifically, overall transactions held steady each week in October at 9% less year over year, according to NPD’s CREST® Performance Alerts. Quick service restaurant chains, able to leverage off-premises operations during the pandemic, also stabilized at -9% throughout the month.
On the other hand, transactions fluctuated from -16% in the first week of October to -14% in the last full week of the month at full service restaurant chains, which depend more on dine-in services.
Digital and off-premises orders underpinned gains in stability.
With dine-in operations limited and consumers in search of contactless foodservice, the NPD folks say digital restaurant orders from mobile apps, text messages, and the internet grew by 138% in the July, August, and September quarter compared to a year earlier. Off-premises orders from carry-out, delivery, and drive-thru increased by 22% year over year in the quarter, while on-premises/dine-in declined by 62% year over year.
“While some of the steep transaction and traffic declines experienced at the height of the mandated shelter-at-home and dine-in closures have been recovered, many uncertainties lie ahead for the industry,” says David Portalatin, NPD food industry advisor. “The continuing pandemic, governmental restrictions, and relief funding are just a few of the uncertainties. But, what we do know for certain is that consumers continue to rely on restaurants and other foodservice outlets to prepare their meals, and there is pent-up demand while we wait for a return to normalcy.”