Negotiated cash fed cattle trade for the week began to take shape Thursday, on light to moderate trade and moderate demand in the western Corn Belt. Early live sales were $1 higher at $113-$114/cwt., with dressed sales steady at $180. Although too few to trend, there were a few early live trades in Nebraska at $114, which was steady to $1 lower than last week.
Cattle futures firmed on Thursday, mostly retaining gains from the previous session. Along with increasing whole beef values and the promise of steady to higher cash fed cattle prices, strength was also attributed to lighter carcass weights, as a barometer of marketing currentness. According to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report yesterday, steer carcass weights of 894 lbs. (week ending Oct. 20) were 5 lbs. lighter than the previous week and previous year. Heifer carcass weights of 826 lbs. were 5 lbs. lighter than the previous week and 3 lbs. lighter than the previous year.
Live Cattle futures closed an average of 49¢ higher.
Except for 17¢ lower in spot Nov, Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 49¢ higher.
Wholesale beef values were higher on Choice and steady on Select, with moderate to good fairly good demand and light offerings, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.62 higher Thursday afternoon at $218.55/cwt. Select was 22¢ higher at $204.25.