Cattle feeders offered 7,561 head in the weekly Fed Cattle Exchange Auction Wednesday and sold 1,443 head for a weighted average price of $105/cwt.–746 head for delivery at 1-9 days and 697 head for delivery at 1-17 days. Except for one lot from Iowa, sales were from the Southern Plains, where last week’s negotiated price was mostly $112. Country trade in the region so far this week is also at $105.
Even so, Cattle futures continued higher in active trade, following outside markets, despite growing concerns about the potential of COVID-19 to reduce harvest capacity utilization. If that happens to any degree, then logic and last summer’s packing plant fire suggest higher beef prices and lower fed cattle prices.
Live Cattle futures closed an average of $2.21 higher, (40¢ higher in the back contract to $4.50 higher in spot Apr).
Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $4.72 higher, ($1.22 higher at the back to $6.55 higher).
Wholesale beef values were sharply lower on light demand and light to moderate offerings, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was $5.54 lower Wednesday afternoon at $222.34/cwt. Select was $5.98 lower at $211.77.
Corn futures closed fractionally lower to 1¢ lower.
After fractionally higher to 4¢ higher through May ’21, Soybean futures closed mostly 6¢ to 7¢ higher.
The monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates are scheduled to be released Thursday.