Cattle futures continued to soften Friday on the week’s lower cash fed cattle prices and ongoing recession fears.
Pressure could have also included uncertainty regarding the railroad strike set to begin Monday. Ultimately the strike was averted, at least for now, when President Biden signed an executive order Friday, creating a Presidential Emergency Board (PEB). The PEB has 30 days to recommend a resolution. The railroads and the unions then have another 30 days to negotiate a settlement.
Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.29 lower (57¢ to $2.55 lower).
Live Cattle futures closed an average of 64¢ lower.
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 steady in the Southern Plains at $137/cwt., steady to $4 lower in Nebraska at $144-$145 and $2-$5 in the western Corn Belt at $145. Dressed prices were $2 lower in Nebraska at $230 and $2-$4 lower in the western Corn Belt at $228-$230.
Choice Boxed beef cutout value was $1.16 higher Friday afternoon at $268.91/cwt. Select was 12¢ lower at $241.79/cwt.
Estimated total cattle slaughter last week of 677,000 head was 84,000 head more than the previous holiday-shortened week. Total estimated year-to-date cattle slaughter of 18.2 million head was 211,000 head more (+1.2%) than last year. Estimated year-to-date beef production of 15.0 billion lbs. was 153.5 million lbs. more (+1.0%).
Corn and Soybean futures closed narrowly mixed Friday as traders positioned following the massive selloff earlier in the week.
Corn futures closed mixed from fractionally lower to 2¢ higher through Sep ‘23, and then 1¢ to 2¢ lower.
Soybean futures closed mostly fractionally mixed to 1¢ higher through Sep ‘23 and then 1¢ to 2¢ lower.