Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from mostly inactive on light demand to a standstill through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.
For the week, live prices were $4-$5 higher in the Southern Plains at $140/cwt., $4-$5 higher in Nebraska at $144-$148 and $1-$4 higher in the western Corn Belt at $145-$148. Dressed prices were $2-$3 higher in Nebraska at $229-$230 and near the top of the previous week’s trade in the western Corn Belt at $229.
Choice Boxed beef cutout value was 27¢ higher Friday afternoon at $263.37/cwt. Select was $2.13 higher at $239.59/cwt.
Estimated total cattle slaughter last week of 647,000 was 4,000 fewer than the previous week but 11,000 head more than the previous year. Total estimated year-to-date cattle slaughter of 20.77 million head was 246,000 head more (+1.2%) than a year earlier. Total estimated year-to-date beef production of 17.12 billion lbs. was 171.3 million lbs. more (+1.0%).
Although supported by the week’s stronger cash prices, Live Cattle futures wobbled Friday — an average of 37¢ lower in the front five contracts and then unchanged to an average of 4¢ higher.
Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.02 lower, pressured by Corn futures, which were 10¢ to 14¢ higher through Jly ‘23, fueled by the latest World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (see below).
Soybean futures closed mostly 1¢ to 5¢ higher after 40¢ lower in spot Aug and 14¢ higher in near Sep.
Despite the latest pressure from feed prices, Feeder Cattle futures mainly maintained the previous two week’s strong gains, week to week on Friday. Week to week on Thursday, The CME Feeder Cattle Index closed $2.85 higher at $178.28/cwt. That’s almost $6 higher over the last two weeks.