Cattle futures surged higher Wednesday, led by Live Cattle, supported by recent wholesale boxed beef strength, performance-depressing winter weather forecast across the Northern Plains, as well as bullish expectations for Friday’s Cattle on Feed report. Evidence of tightening cattle numbers also continues to grow.
Live Cattle futures closed an average of 98¢ higher (25¢ higher at the back to $2.12 higher toward the front).
Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 56¢ higher.
That was with Corn futures closing mostly 6¢ to 10¢ higher through Jly ‘24, supported by the drier outlook in South America. Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 4¢ higher through Nov ‘23 and then mostly 2¢ to 5¢ lower.
Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from mostly inactive on light demand to a standstill through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.
Last week, live prices were $155/cwt. in the Southern Plains and $155-$157 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were $248.
Choice Boxed beef cutout value was 19¢ lower Wednesday afternoon at $264.86/cwt. Select was $2.39 higher at $236.29/cwt.