Negotiated cash fed cattle prices for the week were generally steady to mostly $2 higher on a live basis through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service: $112/cwt. in the Southern Plains, mostly $112 in Nebraska, mostly $111 with a few up to $112 in Colorado. They were steady to $6 higher week to week in the western Corn Belt at $110-$112. Dressed trade was $3-$4 higher at $175-$176.
Cattle futures closed mostly higher Thursday, helped along by stronger front-month Lean Hog futures.
Live Cattle futures closed an average of 62¢ higher.
Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 26¢ higher, except for an average of 17¢ lower in three contracts.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was 58¢ lower Thursday afternoon at $209.95/cwt. Select was $4.21 lower at $195.65.
The average dressed steer weight of 921 lbs. the week ending Dec. 19 was 1 lb. lighter than the previous week, but 17 lbs. heavier than the same time a year earlier, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 847 lbs. was 1 lbs. lighter than the previous week, but 14 lbs. heavier year over year.
Net U.S. beef export sales of 14,900 metric tons reported for 2020 were up noticeably from the previous week and up 82% from the prior four-week average, according to the U.S. weekly Export Sales report for the week ending Dec. 24. Increases were primarily for Japan, China, South Korea, Mexico and Canada.