Daily Cattle Current Podcast

Daily Cattle Current Podcast 2017-06-03T14:35:39-05:00

Daily Cattle Current Podcast

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Cattle Current Podcast—July 23, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on moderate demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

For the week, live sales in Nebraska are steady to $2 lower at $122-$123/cwt. Dressed trade is $1-$7 lower at $195.

Live sales in the western Corn Belt are $5 lower at $120. Dressed trade is $1 lower to $5 higher at $195-$202

Live sales in the Southern Plains this week are mainly steady at $120.

Feeder Cattle closed higher Thursday, supported by lower Corn futures.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.40 higher across the board. 

Live Cattle benefitted from higher wholesale beef prices the last couple of days, although it seems way too early to call a seasonal bottom.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 68¢ higher across the board.

Strong weekly export sales also provided support.

U.S. net beef export sales for 2021 totaled 25,100 metric tons the week ending July 15, according to USDA’s weekly U.S. Export Sales report. That was noticeably more than the previous week and 63% more than the prior four-week average. Increases primarily were for South Korea, Japan, China, Canada, and Mexico.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 90¢ higher Thursday afternoon at $266.14/cwt. Select was $1.00 higher at $249.77/cwt. Steer byproduct value was $14.07/cwt., the first time it reached that mark since April of 2015. It started this calendar year right at $9.00.

July 22nd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 22, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade and demand were moderate in the Southern Plains through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Compared to last week, live sales traded $1 lower at $119/cwt.

Although too few transactions to trend, there was limited trade and light demand in Nebraska, where a few live sales traded at $122-$123, compared to $123-$125 last week.

Cattle futures, especially Feeder Cattle, gained Wednesday. It was tough to pinpoint any particular reason. Perhaps some of the support came from early positioning ahead of the Cattle on Feed and semiannual Cattle reports due out Friday.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.12 higher. 

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 48¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 36¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $265.24/cwt. Select was 19¢ higher at $248.77/cwt.

Corn futures closed mostly fractionally higher to 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mixed, down 1¢ to 4¢ in the front two contracts, then mostly 2¢ to 6¢ higher through Sep ’22 and then mostly fractionally higher to 7¢ lower.

July 21st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 21, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from a standstill to limited with very light demand through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Cattle futures closed lower amid light trade Tuesday, led by Feeder Cattle, which was pressured by Corn futures once again.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.25 lower through the front five contracts, then down 18¢ to 30¢ at the back. 

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 47¢ lower, except for 73¢ higher in the back contract.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.61 lower Tuesday afternoon at $264.88/cwt. Select was 91¢ lower at $248.58/cwt. Also of note, steer byproduct value spiked 80¢ to $13.93/cwt.

Grain futures bounced higher Tuesday with hotter, drier weather forecast in the Corn Belt and wheat challenges in the West.

Corn futures closed 12¢ to 16¢ higher through Jly ‘22, and then mostly 2¢ to 6¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 15¢ higher through Sep ‘22, and then 8¢ to 9¢ higher.

July 20th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 20, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week, live trade was generally steady: $120/cwt. in the Southern Plains; $123-$125 in Nebraska; $125 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was steady in Nebraska at $196-$202 and steady to $5 lower in the western Corn Belt at $196-$197.

Cattle futures faded early pressure from outside markets to close mostly higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 52¢ higher, except for 5¢ lower in Apr. 

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from and average of 46¢ lower to an average of 16¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.45 lower Monday afternoon at $266.49/cwt. Select was $2.30 lower at $249.49/cwt.

Grain futures closed mixed Monday with traders eyeing sharply lower outside markets and weather.

Corn futures closed narrowly mixed, mostly 1¢ lower to fractionally higher.

Soybean futures closed 14¢ to 26¢ lower through Sep. ’22 and then mostly 9¢ lower.

July 19th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 19, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was limited on light to moderate demand with too few transactions to trend.

For the week, live trade was generally steady in the Southern Plains at $120/cwt. and at $123 in Nebraska. It was unevenly steady in the western Corn Belt at $125.00-$125.50. There was no established dressed trade.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.93 lower Friday afternoon at $267.94/cwt. Select was 69¢ lower at $251.79/cwt.

Total estimated cattle slaughter last week was 653,000 head, which was 78,000 head more than the previous holiday-shortened week.

Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 17.94 million head is 802,000 head more (+4.68%) than the same period last year.

Year-to-date estimated total beef production of 14.85 billion lbs. is 706.5 million lbs. more (+4.99%) than last year.

Cattle futures lost some ground Friday amid generally steady cash prices, lower outside markets and stronger Wheat futures.

That was despite front-month Lean Hog futures surging higher in response to news that African Swine Fever (ASF) was confirmed in Germany’s domestic swine population for the first time, by the National Reference Laboratory for African Swine Fever at the nation’s Friedrich-Loeffler Institute (FLI). The disease was confirmed in one sow at an organic farm and two pigs at a smallholdings farm, in districts near the border between Germany and Poland. The disease was confirmed in a wild boar in the same region last September.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.14 lower (72¢ to $1.75 lower).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 68¢ lower (12¢ to 95¢ lower).

Grain futures closed mixed Friday.

Corn futures closed 3¢ to 8¢ lower through new-crop contracts and then fractionally higher to 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 7¢ to 11¢ higher through Aug. ’22 and then mostly 2¢ to 3¢ higher.

July 18th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 16, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Texas Panhandle through Thursday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was limited on light to moderate demand with too few transactions to trend.

On Wednesday, live sales in Nebraska were steady with the previous week at $123/cwt. and unevenly steady in the western Corn Belt at $125.00-$125.50. Last week, dressed trade in both regions was at $196-$202.

A day earlier, live trade in the Southern Plains was generally steady at $120.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed Thursday with pressure from sluggish cash fed cattle sales and continued erosion of wholesale beef values. Weekly U.S. beef export sales also took a breather.

Net U.S. beef export sales for the week ending July 8 were 9,300 metric tons (2021), which was 61% less than the previous week and 44% less than the prior four-week average, according to the Weekly U.S. Export Sales report. Increases were primarily for Japan, Mexico, China, Taiwan), and South Korea. 

Feeder Cattle futures closed mixed, from 25¢ lower to 43¢ higher.

Live Cattle futures closed mixed, from an average of 17¢ lower to an average of 9¢ higher, except for unchanged in the back contract.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.01 lower Thursday afternoon at $269.87/cwt. Select was $1.27 lower at $252.48/cwt.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending July 3 was 884 lbs., according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 1 lb. heavier than the previous week but 12 lbs. lighter than the same week a year earlier. The average dressed heifer weight of 811 lbs. was 1 lbs. lighter than the previous week and 15 lbs. lighter than the previous year.

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 4¢ lower through Jul ’22 and then 2¢ to 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 3¢ to 6¢ lower across the board.

July 15th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 15, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade in Nebraska was slow on light demand through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Compared to the last reported market on Monday, live sales traded $2 lower at $123/cwt. Last week, dressed sales were at $196-$202/cwt.

In the Southern Plains and Western Corn Belt, trade was mostly inactive on light demand. On Tuesday in the Southern Plains, live sales traded mostly at $120/cwt. In the Western Corn Belt, last week live sales traded from $124-$126/cwt. and dressed at $196-$202/cwt.

Cattle futures tried to extend gains early Wednesday but apparently ran out of technical steam.

Feeder Cattle were also pressured by strong gains in Corn futures.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2 lower (from $1.55 to $2.42).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 41¢ lower, except for 12¢ higher in the back contract.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 46¢ lower Wednesday afternoon at $272.88/cwt. Select was $2.99 lower at $253.75/cwt.

Front-month grain futures continued higher with a hotter, drier forecast and reports of storm-damaged beans in some areas of the Corn Belt.

Corn futures closed 15¢ to 18¢ higher through new-crop contracts and then mostly unchanged to fractionally higher.

Soybean futures closed 29¢ to 38¢ higher through the front six contracts and then mostly 20¢ to 25¢ higher.

July 14th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 14, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in the Texas Panhandle through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Compared to last week, early live sales traded steady at $120/cwt. In Kansas, trading was slow on moderate demand. Compared to last week, early live sales traded steady to $1 higher, mostly at $120/cwt.

In Nebraska and the Western Corn Belt, cash trading was mostly inactive on light demand. In Nebraska on Monday, live sales traded at $125/cwt.; dressed sales last week traded from $196-$202/cwt. In the Western Corn Belt, last week live sales traded from $124-$126/cwt. and dressed at $196-$202/cwt.

Whether it was hedging for inflation (see below) or simply considering the fundamentals and optimistic prices ahead, Live Cattle futures closed higher Tuesday, dragging Feeder Cattle along.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1 higher (45¢ to $1.92 higher).

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 82¢ higher (62¢ to $1.17 higher).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.66 lower Tuesday afternoon at $273.34/cwt. Select was $2.03 lower at $256.74/cwt.

Net U.S. beef export sales were 23,700 metric tons (for 2021) the week ending July 1, according to USDA’s Weekly Export Sales report. That was 96% more than the previous week and 64% more than the prior four-week average.

Increases were primarily for South Korea, Japan, China, Mexico, and Canada. 

Grain futures edged higher with follow-through support from the previous day’s, WASDE.

Corn futures closed 7¢ to 8¢ higher through Jly ‘22, and then mostly 3 higher

Soybean futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ higher.

July 13th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 13, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in Nebraska through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Early live sales traded steady to $2 higher than last week at $125/cwt. Dressed sales there last week were at $196-$202/cwt.

Trading in the Western Corn Belt was mostly inactive on very light demand. Last week, live sales traded from $124-$126/cwt. and dressed sales were at $196-$202/cwt.

In all other major trading regions, trading was at a standstill. Last week in the Texas Panhandle, live sales traded at $120/cwt. In Kansas, live sales were at $119-$120/cwt.

Live Cattle futures gained Monday, supported by higher prices forecast in the latest World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (see below).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 52¢ higher.Feeder Cattle futures faltered with another session of higher Corn futures.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 70¢ lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.59 lower Monday afternoon at $275.00/cwt. Select was $1.36 higher at $258.77.

Grain futures closed higher, supported by the WASDE.

Corn futures closed 15¢ to 16¢ higher through new-crop contracts, and then mostly 11¢ to 12¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 18¢ to 20¢ higher.

July 12th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 12, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Texas Panhandle though Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was limited on light demand.

For the week, live prices were generally steady to $2 lower in the Southern Plains at $119-$120/cwt. and steady to either side of steady at $123-$126 in the north. Dressed trade was steady in the western Corn Belt at $196-$202 but steady to $4 higher in Nebraska at  $198-$202.

The five-area direct average steer price through Thursday was $122.01/cwt. on a live basis, which was $1.81 less than the same period a week earlier. The average steer price in the beef was 34¢ higher at $198.48.

Feeder Cattle futures faded pressure through much of the session to close higher Friday, perhaps supported by some positioning ahead of Monday’s monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.68 higher ($1.30 to $2.12 higher).

Live Cattle futures managed to edge higher but remained under pressure from declining wholesale beef values. Monday’s markets could come under pressure from the Executive order signed by President Biden Friday, aimed at a number of broad issues, including concentration and competition in several industries, including agriculture.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 51¢ higher, except for 5¢ lower in spot Aug.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.38 lower Friday afternoon at $278.59/cwt. Select was $2.65 lower at $257.41

Corn futures closed 6¢ to 8¢ lower through new-crop contracts, and then fractionally higher to 3¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 10¢ to 14¢ higher.

July 11th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 9, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in the Southern Plains through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Elsewhere, trade was slow with moderate demand.

For the week, live prices are generally steady to $2 lower in the Southern Plains at $119-$120/cwt. and steady to either side of steady at $123-$125 in the north. Dressed trade is steady in the western Corn Belt at $196-$202 but steady to $4 higher in Nebraska at  $198-$202.

Cattle futures closed lower Thursday, pressured by declining wholesale beef prices and softer cash prices.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.28 lower.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.24 lower.

Choice was boxed beef cutout value was $2.93 lower Thursday afternoon at $281.97/cwt. Select was $2.02 lower at $260.06

Favorable weather continued to pressure Corn and Soybean futures Thursday.

Corn futures closed down between 6¢ and 14¢ lower through the front six contracts.

Soybean futures closed between 1¢ and 7¢ lower through the front six contracts, except for spot July, up 3¢.

July 9th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 8, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was moderate with moderate demand in the Texas Panhandle through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. In Kansas, trading was slow on moderate demand. Live sales in both regions were steady to $2 lower at $120/cwt.

Trading in Nebraska and the Western Corn Belt was limited on light demand.

In Nebraska, a few dressed sales traded at $198-$202/cwt. Prices last week were $198 in the beef and $125.00-$126.50 on a live basis.

In the Western Corn Belt, a few live sales traded at $125/cwt. and a few dressed from $200-$202/cwt. Last week, prices were $124-$126 and $197-$202, respectively.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.71 lower Wednesday amid likely profit taking from solid gains in the previous session.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.15 lower with the steady to lower cash market and continued decline in wholesale beef values.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.78 lower Wednesday afternoon at $284.90/cwt. Select was $1.23 lower at $262.08

Corn futures continued under pressure from the wetter, cooler forecast: 3¢ and 9¢ lower through the front six contracts.

Soybean futures bounced back from the previous day’s steep decline, helped along by eroding crop conditions. They closed 20¢ and 22¢ higher through the front six contracts.

July 7th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 7, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska and the Western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. It was at a standstill in the Southern Plains.

Last week, live prices were at $120-$122/cwt. in the Southern Plains and at $124-$126 in the North. Dressed prices were at $197-$198.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $3.03 higher across the board Tuesday, taking advantage of the wide berth opened by Corn futures.

That helped support Live Cattle, despite the decline in wholesale beef prices, in tandem with climbing retail prices that could challenge demand.

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from 40¢ higher in spot Aug to 23¢ lower in Dec with the back two contracts unchanged.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.24 higher Tuesday afternoon at $286.68/cwt. Select was $1.10 lower at $263.31

Corn and Soybean futures plunged Tuesday, pressured by a wetter, cooler forecast.

Corn futures closed down between 38¢ and 41¢ lower through the front six contracts.

Soybean futures closed down between 86¢ and 95¢ lower through the front six contracts.

July 6th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 5-6, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska and the Western Corn Belt through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. It was at a standstill in the Southern Plains.

For the week, live prices were steady to $2 lower in the Southern Plains at $120-$122/cwt. and unevenly steady in the North at $124-$126. Dressed prices were steady to $1 higher at $197-$198.

Stagnant cash trade and lower wholesale beef prices pressured Live Cattle futures Friday.

Live Cattle futures closed mostly lower, from 2¢ lower toward the back to $1.57 lower in spot Aug, except for unchanged to 2¢ higher in three contracts.

Softer Corn futures helped Feeder Cattle futures close an average of 70¢ higher, except for 50¢ lower at the back.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.21 lower Friday afternoon at $285.44/cwt. Select was $2.52 lower at $264.41.

Estimated total cattle slaughter last week was 623,000 head, according to USDA, which was 38,000 head fewer than the previous week. Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 16.71 million head is 865,000 head more (+5.5%) than last year. Year-to-date estimated beef production of 13.85 billion lbs. is 784.7 million lbs. more (+6.0%).

Thin trade volume and positive weather pressured Corn and Soybean futures.

Corn futures closed 22¢ lower in spot Jly and then 8¢ and 9¢ lower in new crop contracts. Soybean futures closed mostly 2¢ to 5¢ higher.

For the week, though, Corn futures closed an average of 59¢ higher through the front six contracts, while Soybean futures closed an average of $1.27 higher through the front six contracts.

That had everything to do with USDA’s Acreage report issued on Wednesday. USDA estimated corn planted area for all purposes to be 1.87 million acres more than last year at 92.7 million acres, and soybean planted area 5% more at 87.6 million acres. That was significantly less than analysts expected for both crops.

July 5th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 2, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in all major feeding regions through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

So far this week, live prices are steady to $2 lower in the Southern Plains at $120-$122/cwt. and unevenly steady in the North at $124-$126. Dressed prices are steady to $1 higher at $197-$198.

Cattle futures rallied back Thursday, following heavy pressure from grains in the previous session.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.03 higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.27 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.17 lower Thursday afternoon at $230.23/cwt. Select was $1.52 lower at $205.35.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending June 19 was 879 lbs., according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 3 lbs. lighter than the previous week and 11 lbs. lighter than the same week last year. The average dressed heifer weight was 2 lbs. heavier week to week at 813 lbs., but 10 lbs. lighter than a year earlier.

Corn and Soybean futures finished Thursday a touch softer amid volatile trade, following the previous day’s limit-up and near limit-up moves in the front months.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed down between 1¢ and 3¢ lower through the front six contracts and then mostly 3¢ to 6¢ lower.

July 1st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—July 1, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices were unevenly steady through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live prices were steady to $1 higher in Nebraska at $125-$126/cwt., but steady to $2 lower in Kansas at $120-$122 (compare to two weeks earlier). Dressed prices in Nebraska were $1 higher at $198.

Although too few to trend, there were some live sales in the western Corn Belt steady to $1 higher at $126 and some in the beef $1 higher at $198.

So far this week, live prices in the Texas Panhandle are steady to 75¢ lower than two weeks earlier at $121.25 to $122.00.

Feeder Cattle futures sagged lower Wednesday beneath the weight of surging Corn futures, while Live Cattle received support from outside markets.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 63¢ higher, except for 5¢ lower in expiring Jun.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.19 lower through the front four months, then an average of 73¢ lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.05 lower Wednesday afternoon at $291.29/cwt. Select was $1.13 lower at $269.27

USDA’s Acreage and Grain Stocks reports (see below) fueled grain futures Wednesday. Along with month-end position squaring, the wetter forecast and the coming holiday, some expect extreme price volatility in the coming days.

Corn futures closed between 25¢ and 40¢ higher through the front six contracts. That included limit-up in the front four new-crop contracts.

Soybean futures closed between 73¢ and 90¢ higher through the front six contracts.

June 30th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 30, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in most regions through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. In the Western Corn Belt, trading was mostly inactive on very light demand. Last week in the region, live sales traded from $125-$126/cwt. and dressed at $197/cwt.

The latest reported market in the Southern Plains was two weeks ago with live sales at $122/cwt.

On Monday in Nebraska, live sales traded at $126.50/cwt. and dressed sales at $197/cwt.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed Tuesday, able to fade some early pressure, but remained mired in uncertainty surrounding potential contract-end volatility (Live Cattle), limited cash trade last week, coupled with next week’s holiday and how Wednesday’s USDA Grain Stocks and Acreage reports will influence feed prices.

Live Cattle futures closed mixed with an average of 33¢ higher through the front three contracts then from 15¢ lower to 25¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed mixed, up an average of 64¢ higher in the front four contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $5.09 lower Tuesday afternoon at $292.34/cwt. Select was $3.56

Grain futures closed mainly narrowly mixed as traders awaited direction from the aforementioned USDA reports due out Wednesday.

Corn futures closed mostly 2¢ lower to 1¢ higher, except 19¢ higher in spot Jly.

June 29th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 29, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Texas Panhandle through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. The latest reported market in the Southern Plains was two weeks ago with live sales at $122/cwt.

Trading was slow on light demand in Nebraska with early live sales steady to $1.50 higher at $126.50/cwt. Last week in Nebraska, dressed sales traded at $197/cwt.

Trading in the Western Corn Belt and Kansas was mostly inactive on very light demand. Last week in the Western Corn Belt, live sales traded from $125-$126/cwt. and dressed sales traded at $197/cwt.

A surge in Corn futures pressured feeder cattle futures on Monday, while live cattle futures traded narrowly mixed.

Live Cattle futures closed mixed from an average of 78¢ lower through the front four contracts to an average of 9¢ higher except for the back contract, unchanged.

Feeder Cattle futures closed down across the board an average of $1.73 lower, from $3.20 lower at the front to $1 lower at the back.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $7.13 lower at $297.43/cwt. Select was $2.22 lower at $273.96.

Grain futures closed rallied back on Monday as weekend weather conditions deteriorated.

Corn futures closed mostly 17¢ to 39¢ higher through Dec ’22.

Soybean futures closed mostly 36¢ to 42¢ higher through Sept ’22.

June 28th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 28, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.     

Through Thursday, AMS reported 43,484 confirmed negotiated sales for the week, compared to 76,273 head the previous week and 86,986 the previous year.

Although there were too few transactions to trend, a few live sales traded $1-$2 higher in Nebraska at $125-$126/cwt. and a few $2 higher in the western Corn Belt at $126.

The previous week, live prices were at $122/cwt. in the Southern Plains and $124 in the North. Dressed prices were at $195.

Through Thursday, the five-area direct average steer price was $2.69 higher week to week on a live basis at $125.54/cwt. The average steer price in the beef was $2.32 higher at $197.86.

Lower Corn futures helped Feeder Cattle futures gain steam on Friday, while Live Cattle inched higher with relatively few traded in the cash market this week.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 19¢ higher, from 53¢ higher in Dec ’21 to 3¢ higher in Jun ’22.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.40 higher, from $2.40 higher at the front to 93¢ higher toward the back.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.86 lower Friday afternoon at $304.56/cwt. Select was 4¢ higher at $276.18.

Grain futures closed mostly down on Friday with more rain forecast. As well, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of small refineries seeking exemptions from federal requirements to blend ethanol or other bio-fuels with their products.

Corn futures closed mostly 10¢ to 17¢ lower through July ’23.

Soybean futures closed mostly 20¢ to 40¢ lower through Sept ’22.

June 27th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 25, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on light demand in the Southern Plains through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. In Nebraska and the Western Corn Belt, trading was limited on light demand. A few live sales in Nebraska traded at $125-$126. 

Last week, live prices were at $122/cwt. in the Southern Plains and $124 in the North. Dressed prices were at $195.

Cattle futures faded early pressure Thursday to close mostly higher, perhaps with positioning ahead of this afternoon’s Cattle on Feed report. Heading into mid-day Friday, Feeder Cattle futures continued to edge higher, while Live Cattle were mostly a touch softer.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 47¢ higher, except for 25¢ lower in near Aug. 

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 84¢ higher, from 52¢ higher to $1.45 higher at the front.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $4.63 lower Thursday afternoon at $312.05/cwt. Select was 73¢ higher at $276.14.

Corn and Soybean futures continued mostly lower Thursday with weather pressure

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 2¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 7¢ to 13¢ lower through Aug ’22, and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ lower.

June 25th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 24, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on light demand in the Southern Plains through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. In Nebraska and the Western Corn Belt, trading was limited on light to moderate demand. A few live sales in Nebraska traded at $126 and a few dressed at $197.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.70 lower Wednesday afternoon at $312.05/cwt. Select was $4.34 lower at $275.41.

Cattle futures softened Wednesday, pressured by crumbling Lean Hog futures, the lack of cash direction and perhaps some early positioning ahead of Friday’s monthly Cattle on Feed report.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 89¢ lower, from 30¢ to $1.40 lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.11 lower, from $1.85 to $2.65 lower.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ lower through new-crop contracts, and then mostly fractionally higher to 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 9¢ lower through the front five contracts and then mostly 6¢ to 10¢ higher.

June 23rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 23, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in the Southern Plains and Western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. In Nebraska, trading was mostly inactive on light demand.

Last week, live prices were at $122/cwt. in the Southern Plains and $124 in the North. Dressed prices were at $195.

Softer Corn futures helped Feeder Cattle futures gain Tuesday, while apparently oversold conditions and reports of higher cash prices in the North spurred Live Cattle.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.65 higher, from $2.12 higher at the front to 65¢ higher at the back.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.70 higher, from $3.25 higher at the front to $2.275 higher toward the back.

Choice boxed beef cutout values was $5.45 lower Tuesday afternoon at $315.75/cwt. Select was $1.71 lower at $279.75.

Grain futures were pressured Tuesday by timely rains forecast across the Midwest.

Corn futures closed mostly 11¢ to 18¢ lower through Dec ’22, except for fractionally higher in spot July.

Soybean futures closed mostly 16¢ to 18¢ lower through Nov ’22.

June 22nd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 22, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill.

Last week, live prices were at $122/cwt. in the Southern Plains and $124 in the North. Dressed prices were at $195.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed Monday, supported by improving fundamentals but balanced by declining wholesale beef values and weaker Lean Hog futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 23¢ lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 47¢ higher, from 7¢ higher at the front to $1.12 higher toward the back.

So far this morning, both are higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.08 lower Monday afternoon at $321.20/cwt. Select was $2.15 lower at $281.46.

Although new-Crop Corn futures eased Monday, overall Corn and Soybean futures were supported by weaker crop conditions (Good and Excellent) week over week and year over year.

Corn futures closed mostly 6¢ to 9¢ lower through new-crop contracts, and generally 3¢ to 5¢ higher in other contracts.

Soybean futures closed mostly 6¢ to 9¢ higher in new-crop contracts and mostly 13¢ to 22¢ higher in the others.

June 22nd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 21, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices last week were $2-$3 higher in the Southern Plains at $122/cwt. and $3-$4 higher in the North at $124. Dressed prices were $4-$5 higher at $195.

Live Cattle futures closed higher Friday, regaining some of what was lost in the previous session, supported by higher cash prices and improving fundamentals.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.00 higher (37¢ to $1.92 higher).

Resurgent grain futures prices pressured Feeder Cattle futures.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.41 lower, from an average of (85¢ lower at the back to $2.37 lower at the front.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.97 lower at $323.28/cwt. Select was $3.63 lower at $283.61.

Estimated total cattle slaughter for the week ending June 19 was 663,000 head, which was 2,000 head fewer than the previous week, but 17,000 head more than a year earlier, according to USDA. Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 15.4 million head is 820,000 more (+5.62%) than the same period last year. Total estimated beef production so far this year is 12.81 billion lbs., which is 772.6 million lbs. more (+6.42%).

Grain futures bounced back Friday from the previous day’s steep selloff, looking for the trading range encompassing the stronger U.S. dollar, weather risk, uncertainty about potential changes to the Renewable Fuel Standard and all of the rest.

Corn futures closed 22¢ to 34¢ higher through Jly ‘22 , and then mostly 14¢ to 17¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 54¢ to 66¢ higher.

June 20th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 18, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Texas Panhandle through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was limited on light demand with too few transactions to trend. So far this week, live prices are $2-$3 higher in the Southern Plains at $122/cwt., $4 higher in Nebraska at $124 and $3-$4 higher in the western Corn Belt at $124. Dressed prices are $4-$5 higher at $195.

Live Cattle futures closed sharply lower Thursday with apparent profit taking, limit-down moves in Lean Hog futures and spillover pressures from widespread commodity selling (see below).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $2.85 lower. 

Despite the pressure, sharply lower grain futures supported Feeder Cattle futures.

Feeder Cattle futures closed mixed, from an average of 49¢ lower to an average of 55¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.92 lower Thursday afternoon at $326.25/cwt. Select was $2.72 lower at $287.24.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending June 5 was 891 lbs., according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 1 lb. less than the previous year. The average dressed heifer weight of 812 lbs. was 12 lbs. lighter.

Grain futures tanked Thursday with promising weather in the Corn Belt. Growing uncertainty about whether President Biden will bolster or relax the current Renewable Fuel Standard added pressure, as did the sharply higher U.S. Dollar.

Moreover, there was broad-based commodity selling, tied to reports of China directing state-owned firms to reduce exposure to foreign commodity markets, in an effort to curb inflation.

Corn futures closed limit down 40¢ through the front six contracts, and then mostly 26¢ to 30¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 82¢ to $1.18 lower through Jly ‘22. And then mostly 55¢ to 69¢ lower.

June 17th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 17, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices continued higher in Kansas and Nebraska on slow trade and light demand through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. So far this week, live prices are $2-$3 higher in the Southern Plains at $122/cwt. and $4 higher in Nebraska at $124. Dressed prices in Nebraska are $4-$5 higher at $195.

Last week, prices in the western Corn Belt were $120-$121 on a live basis and $190-$191 in the beef.

Cattle feeders offered 6,049 head in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. Of those, 1,006 sold — all from the Southern Plains and all on a live weight basis. Steers brought a weighted average price of $121.65/cwt. and heifers brought an average of $121.22.

Cattle futures mostly gained again Wednesday, supported by the recent break in grain futures, as well as higher cash prices. That came in the face of limit-down moves in front-month Lean Hog futures.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 87¢ higher (17¢ to $2.30 higher), except for an average of 25¢ lower in the back two contracts.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 72¢ higher (12¢ to $1.35 higher). 

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $5.26 lower Wednesday afternoon at $329.17/cwt. Select was $8.32 lower at $289.96. The Choice/Select spread was $39.21/cwt.

Positive weather kept pressure on Corn futures Wednesday.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 7¢ lower, except for 5¢ higher in spot Jly.

Soybean futures closed mostly 18¢ to 30¢ lower.

June 16th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 16, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Although too few to trend, there were a few dressed trades at $195/cwt., compared to $190-$191 last week. Elsewhere, trade ranged from mostly inactive on very light demand to a standstill.

Live prices last week were at mostly $119-$120 in the Southern Plains, $120 in Nebraska and $120-$121 in the western Corn Belt.

The recent decline in Corn futures moderated Tuesday but continued to bolster Cattle futures, which were also supported by the outlook for steady to higher cash prices this week.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.34 higher (62¢ to $2.22 higher).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.91 higher through the front four contracts ($1.32 to $1.62 higher) and then an average of 26¢ higher, except for 12¢ lower in the back two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.04 lower at $334.43/cwt. Select was $5.13 lower at $298.28. At $36.15, the Choice/Select spread was the highest since June 2017, when it peaked at $30.92.

Grain futures continued mainly lower Tuesday with the progress-friendly weather forecast in the Corn Belt.

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 7¢ lower, except for 8¢ higher in spot Jly.

Soybean futures closed mostly 17¢ to 21¢ lower.

June 15th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 15, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on very light demand in Nebraska through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were a few live sales at $124/cwt., but too few to trend. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill.

Live prices last week were at mostly $119-$120 in the Southern Plains, $120 in Nebraska and $120-$121 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $190-$191.

Feeder Cattle futures roared higher Monday, buoyed by a sharp break in Corn futures. Live Cattle futures edged higher, with interest apparently constrained by what appears to be post-top wholesale prices for a while.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.78 higher ($2.00 higher at the back to $3.42 higher at the front). That’s right at an average of $5 higher in the last two sessions.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 48¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.09 lower through Monday afternoon at $335.47/cwt. Select was $1.80 lower at $303.41.

Grain futures prices fell Monday, swamped by more weekend rain than expected in the Corn Belt, as well as increased chances for rain and cooler temperatures in that region for the next couple of weeks.

Corn futures closed 25¢ to 31¢ lower through Jly ‘22, and mostly 13¢ and 16¢ lower. 

Soybean futures closed mostly 31¢ to 41¢ lower.

June 14th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 14, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it ranged from limited to mostly inactive on light demand with too few transactions to trend.

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices for the week were mainly steady at mostly $120/cwt. on a live basis, except for $2 higher in the western Corn belt at $122. Dressed trade was steady at $190-$191.

Cattle futures gained Friday with support from softer Corn futures, continued elevated consumer demand and the likelihood improved supply fundamentals are getting closer.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.19 higher ($1.57 higher at the back to $2.77 higher at the front).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.16 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 48¢ lower at $337.77/cwt. Select was $4.89 lower at $305.51.

Estimated total cattle slaughter the week ending June 12 was 665,000 head, according to USDA. That was 127,000 more than the previous holiday-shortened week. Estimated beef production of 545.7 million lbs. was 102.7 million lbs. more.

Corn and Soybean Futures softened Friday with more near-term rain forecast for the Corn Belt and likely week-end profit taking.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 6¢ lower, except for 14¢ and 8¢ lower in the front two contracts.

Soybean futures closed 20¢ to 35¢ lower through Jan ‘22, 11¢ to 18¢ lower through the next five contracts, and then mostly 3¢ to 6¢ lower.

June 13th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 11, 2021

Compared to the previous month, USDA increased projected 2021 beef production by 5 million lbs. to 27.905 billion lbs., in the latest World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE). Analysts with the Economic Research Service (ERS) note higher expected cow slaughter is largely offset by lower steer and heifer slaughter.

USDA forecast the five-area direct fed steer price 70¢ higher for this year to $117/cwt., reflecting current price strength. Projected average prices are $120 in the second quarter, $115 in the third quarter and $120 in the fourth quarter.

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade in the Southern Plains was at a standstill through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. For the week so far, live sales are at $119-$120/cwt.

Elsewhere, trade ranged from slow to inactive on light demand.

Live sales in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt earlier in the week were at $120 on a live basis and at $190-$191 in the beef.

Cattle futures traded mostly higher on Thursday, amid light trade, especially for Live Cattle.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 36¢ higher.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 19¢ higher, except for down an average of 10¢ in the back two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 40¢ lower Thursday afternoon at $338.25/cwt. Select was $2.53 higher at $310.40

June 10th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 10, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade in the Southern Plains, Nebraska and Western Corn Belt was limited on moderate demand through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. In the Texas Panhandle live sales were steady to 50¢ lower than last week at $119.50 to $120.00/cwt. In Kansas, live sales traded mostly steady at $120.00. In Nebraska, a few live sales traded from $120 to $121.

Cattle futures traded mixed Wednesday. Higher Corn futures pressured Feeder Cattle once again, while steady cash helped Live Cattle tread water.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.11 lower (52 to $1.47 lower), except for unchanged and up $1.02 in the back two contracts.

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from an average of 36¢ lower to an average of 35¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 4¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $338.65/cwt. Select was $1.69 higher at $307.87

Grain markets were mixed on Wednesday, with corn futures getting help from ethanol demand and soybeans down across most of the board. The monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates due out Thursday will likely have plenty to say about direction for the rest of the week.

Corn futures closed mostly 2¢ to 4¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 13¢ to 17¢ lower through the front three contracts and then mostly 3¢ to 7¢ lower.

June 9th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 9, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Texas Panhandle through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Last week in the Southern Plains, live sales traded at $120. In Nebraska and the Western Corn Belt, trade was slow on moderate demand. Live sales in Nebraska traded steady at $120, dressed at $190-$191. In the Western Corn Belt, a few lives sales traded from $120-$121 and dressed from $190-$193. In Kansas, trading was limited on light demand with a few live sales at $119.

Cattle futures traded mixed Tuesday with Feeder Cattle mainly pressured by higher Corn futures, while Live Cattle edged higher, helped along by early cash direction.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 59¢ lower through the front half of the board and then an average of 30¢ higher, except for $1.15 lower in the back contract.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 36¢ higher, except for 30¢ lower in the back contract.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 1¢ higher Tuesday afternoon at $338.61/cwt. Select was $2.99 lower at $306.18

A continued hot and dry forecast in the Midwest and Northern Plains helped push  grain markets higher on Tuesday.

Corn futures closed mostly 6¢ to 9¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 6¢ to 17¢ higher, except for 15¢ to 17¢ lower in most ‘23 contracts.

June 8th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 8, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains and Western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. In Nebraska, trading was mostly inactive with very light demand. Last week, live prices were at $120. Dressed prices in Nebraska and the Western Corn Belt were at $190-$191.

Cattle futures tread water to the downside Monday with pressure from new-crop grain prices and the appearance of an imminent top for wholesale beef values.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 18¢ lower, except for 28¢ and 55¢ higher at either end of the board.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 33¢ lower through the front four contracts and then an average of 68¢ higher (37¢ higher to $1.60 higher in the back contract).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 38¢ lower Monday afternoon at $338.60/cwt. Select was $2.56 lower at $309.17.

Except for nearby contracts, grain futures continued to extend gains Monday.

Corn futures closed 10¢ to 14¢ higher in new-crop contracts, and then mostly 4¢ to 7¢ higher. Spot Jly was down 3¢.

Soybean futures closed mostly 7¢ to 14¢ higher, except for 4¢ to 23¢ lower in the front three contracts.

June 7th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 7, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in the Southern Plains through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on light demand.

Regionally, negotiated prices last week were mostly steady to $1 either side of steady. Live prices were at $120/cwt. and dressed prices were at $189-$191.

Estimated total cattle slaughter for the week ending June 5 was 538,000 head, according to USDA. That was 91,000 head fewer than the previous week and 90,000 head fewer than the same week a year earlier. Estimated beef production for the week was 443.0 million lbs., which was 75 million lbs. less than the previous week.

Surging Corn futures prices hammered Feeder Cattle futures on Friday. It’s likely week-end profit taking also played a role.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.09 lower ($1.32 lower at the back to $3.02 lower in spot Aug).

Although mainly lower Friday, Live Cattle futures continued to consolidate, supported by wholesale beef values and slaughter data suggesting a return to post-pandemic normal following disruptions at JBS earlier in the week.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 47¢ lower, except for 5¢ and $1 higher at either end of the board and unchanged in away Aug.

Net U.S. beef export sales of 12,600 metric tons for 2021 were 55% less than the previous week and 38% less than the prior four-week average, according to USDA’s Export Sales report for the week ending May 27. Increases were primarily for Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Mexico and Chile.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.57 lower Friday afternoon at $338.98/cwt. Select was $1.43 lower at $311.73.

Grain markets were sharply higher on Friday as extreme heat gripped the Western Corn Belt and Northern Plains.

Corn futures closed up through Jul ’22 an average of 24¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed up an average of 33¢ through Jan ’22.

June 6th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 4, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Texas Panhandle through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was limited on light to moderate demand.

So far this week, live sales are steady to $4 higher in the Texas Panhandle at $120/cwt., steady in Kansas at $119 to $120 and steady at $120 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade is steady with the upper end of last week’s range at $190-$191.

Cattle futures, especially Feeder Cattle faded early pressure to close mainly higher Thursday with continued support from higher wholesale beef values.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.54 higher (62¢ higher in spot Aug to $2.92 higher at the back).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 60¢ higher (12¢ to $1.02 higher), except for an average of 44¢ lower in the front three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 39¢ higher Thursday afternoon at $340.55/cwt. Select was $1.28 higher at $313.16.

Grain markets were mainly lower on Thursday with weather forecasts continuing to cast a shadow.

Corn futures closed 6¢ to 13¢ lower through Jly ’22 and then mostly unchanged to fractionally higher.

Soybean futures closed 9¢ to 13¢ lower through Jan ‘22 and then mostly 5¢ higher, except for fractionally lower to 4¢ lower in a few middle contracts.

June 3rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 3, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in the Southern Plains. A few live sales in the Texas Panhandle traded from $119 to $120/cwt. through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. In Kansas, a few live purchases traded at $120. In Nebraska and the Western Corn Belt, negotiated cash trading was slow with moderate demand. There were a few dressed trades in Nebraska at $190 to $191. In the western Corn Belt, there were a few live sales at $120 and few in the beef at $190-$191.

Feeder Cattle futures rallied higher with news JBS was resuming operations following the cyber-attack on its IT systems.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.08 higher, from $3.18 to $2.40 higher in the front three months and $1.90 to $1.40 higher across the rest of the board.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.61 higher, with the most gain ion the front two contracts. Only Apr ’22 and Jun ’22 gained less than $1 at 75¢ and 88¢ respectively.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was was $5.60 higher Wednesday afternoon at $340.16/cwt. Select was $5.43 higher at $311.88.

Grain markets were mixed on Wednesday with weather weighing on the corn market.

Corn futures closed down across the board an average of 6¢ lower through Jly ‘22.

Soybean futures closed up up an average of 16¢ through Mar ’22.

June 3rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—June 2, 2021

Cattle futures dropped hard Tuesday, in response to the uncertainties spawned by disruptions to JBS processing facilities, caused by the Sunday cyber-attack on that company’s global IT infrastructure. They clawed back some of the losses by the end of the session, though.

According to a JBS news release: “On Sunday, May 30, JBS USA determined that it was the target of an organized cyber-security attack, affecting some of the servers supporting its North American and Australian IT systems. The company took immediate action, suspending all affected systems, notifying authorities and activating the company’s global network of IT professionals and third-party experts to resolve the situation. The company’s backup servers were not affected, and it is actively working with an Incident Response firm to restore its systems as soon as possible.

“The company is not aware of any evidence at this time that any customer, supplier or employee data has been compromised or misused as a result of the situation. Resolution of the incident will take time, which may delay certain transactions with customers and suppliers.”

Widespread reports suggested JBS packing facilities closed. At press time there was no word on when normal production would resume. However, there were unconfirmed reports Tuesday evening that operations would resume Wednesday.

There was no negotiated trade report from the Agricultural Marketing Service as of press time Tuesday evening.

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices last week were at $116-$120/cwt. in the Texas Panhandle, at $119-$120 in Kansas and at $120 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $191 in Nebraska and at $189-$191 in the western Corn Belt.

Feeder Cattle futures closed mixed on Tuesday, with JBS uncertainty weighing on the front months.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.28 lower through the front half of the board, (45¢ lower to $2.20 lower in spot Aug) and then an average of 36¢ higher.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.70 lower in the front three contracts (77¢ to $2.32 lower) and then an average of 89¢ higher, except for unchanged in the back contract.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.59 higher Tuesday afternoon at $334.56/cwt. Select was $5.55 higher at $306.45.

Grain markets were up on Tuesday on news of a hot, dry forecast for the next two weeks in northern U.S. growing areas as well as southern Canada. Brazil’s drought also worsened.

Corn futures closed 28¢ to 32¢ higher through Jly ’22 and then mostly 10¢ to 15¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 16¢ to 24¢ higher.

June 1st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 31 and June 1, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices last week were steady to $3 lower in the Texas Panhandle at $116-$120/cwt., steady to $1 lower in Kansas at $119-$120 and steady at $120 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were steady to $1 higher in Nebraska at $191; steady in the western Corn Belt $189-$191.

Live Cattle futures closed mixed Friday, an average of 46¢ lower through the front four contracts, and then unchanged to an average of 7¢ higher. Part of the pressure likely stemmed from the lack of budge in cash prices, while the rally in wholesale beef values appears long in the tooth.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 99¢ higher Friday at $330.97/cwt. Select was $3.20 lower at $300.90.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.28 lower. Even though Corn futures were mostly 3¢ to 9¢ lower, the steep climb in the previous session continued to apply pressure. Feeder Cattle were down an average of about $3 in the last two sessions.

Total estimated cattle slaughter the week ending May 29 was 629,000 head, according to USDA. That was 40,000 head fewer than the previous week. Total estimated beef production for the week was 518.0 million lbs., which was 32.7 million lbs. less than the prior week.

May 30th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 28, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in Colorado through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was mostly inactive on very light demand.

So far this week, live prices are $116-$120/cwt. in the Texas Panhandle, $119-$120 in Kansas and at $120 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices are at $191 in Nebraska and $189-$191 in the western Corn Belt.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.69 lower Thursday, from 20¢ lower in spot May to $2.35 lower. Corn futures applied the pressure, up 33¢ to 40¢ higher through Jly ’22 and then mostly 13¢ to 24¢ higher. Dryness in the forecast and strong exports helped fuel the bounce. Soybean futures tagged along, closing 26¢ to 34¢ higher.

Live Cattle futures edged an average of 20¢ higher, except for 10¢ lower in spot Jun. Support included positive export news.

Net U.S. beef export sales of 27,900 metric tons (mt) for 2021 were 19% more than the previous week and 45% more than the prior four-week average, according to USDA’s U.S. Export Sales report for the week ending May 20. Increases were primarily for China, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, and Taiwan.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 49¢ higher Thursday afternoon at $329.98/cwt. Select was 5¢ higher at $304.10.

May 27th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 27, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices in the Texas Panhandle Prices were steady to $3 lower than last week at $116-$120/cwt., steady to $1 higher in Kansas at $119-$120 and steady in Nebraska at $120. Dressed trade was steady to $1 higher in Nebraska at $191.

Although there were too few transactions to trend in the western Corn Belt, early live trades were steady at $120, while dressed sales were steady to $3 higher at $191.

Cattle futures edged lower Wednesday. Pressure included softer cash prices in the south and a deceleration in wholesale beef values.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 49¢ lower (5¢ to $1.47 lower), except for an average of 24¢ higher in two contracts. 

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 34¢ lower.

Corn futures edged mostly 2¢ to 5¢ higher Wednesday, following the previous day’s steep break.

Front-month Soybeans continued to soften with the lack of follow-through export sales. Soybean futures closed fractionally lower to 8¢ lower through Jly ‘22 and then mostly 7¢ higher.

May 26th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 26, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in the Southern Plains, Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Although too few to trend, there were some early live sales at $119 to mostly $120/cwt., except for $118 in the western Corn Belt. Early dressed sales in Nebraska were at $191.

Feeder Cattle futures closed higher Tuesday, boosted by another sharp break in Corn futures prices.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.07 higher, from 35¢ higher in spot May to $2.55 higher. 

Live Cattle futures mainly edged higher, supported by wholesale beef values and resurgent front-month

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 30¢ higher, except for unchanged to an average of 9¢ lower in three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.09 higher Tuesday afternoon at $329.92/cwt. Select was 87¢ higher at $304.26

Corn futures wilted Tuesday, pressured by planting progress and crop development, forecast rain and chatter about more corn acres.

Corn futures closed 23¢ to 37¢ lower though Jly ‘22 and then mostly 8¢ lower

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 15¢ lower through May ‘22 and then mostly 6¢ lower.

May 25th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 25, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive with very light demand in Nebraska and the western Corn belt through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill.

Live prices last week were at $119-$120/cwt. in the Texas Panhandle, at $119 in Kansas and at $120 in other regions. Dressed trade was at $190-$191 in Nebraska, $191 in Colorado and at $188-$191 in the western Corn Belt.

Feeder Cattle futures shrugged off Friday’s Cattle on Feed report and mostly extended gains Monday, helped along by further softness in Corn futures and recently stronger cash prices.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 57¢ higher, except for 95¢ lower in spot May and unchanged in Mar.

Live Cattle futures weakened. Besides the lack of early-week cash direction, traders are likely trying to decide whether beef prices decline significantly after the Memorial Day push or slowly recede from current levels with further reopening of restaurants and food service.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 55¢ lower, from 15¢ lower toward the back to 92¢ lower in spot Jun.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.66 higher Monday afternoon at $327.83/cwt. Select was $1.08 higher at $303.39

Corn futures closed mostly 5¢ to 6¢ lower. 

Soybean futures closed mostly 3¢ to 4¢ higher, after 1¢ to 3¢ lower in the front three contracts.

May 24th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 24, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive with very light demand in Nebraska and the western Corn belt through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill.

For the week, live prices were steady to 50¢ higher in the Texas Panhandle at $119-$120/cwt., $1 lower in Kansas at $119, steady in Nebraska at $120 and mostly steady in the western Corn Belt at $120. Dressed prices were steady to $1 lower at $190-$191 in Nebraska and at $188-$191 in the western Corn Belt.

Cattle futures closed mainly higher Friday, with a late surge after two-sided trading. Support included softer, more stable Corn futures, along with continued demand strength.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.69 higher. 

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 66¢ higher, (27¢ to $1.07 higher), except for and average of 30¢ lower in the back to contracts.

How the market reacts to the monthly Cattle on Feed report (see below) is anybody’s guess.

Boxed beef cutout value (p.m.): Choice boxed beef cutout value was 99¢ higher Friday afternoon at $325.17/cwt. Select was 70¢ higher at $302.31.

Estimated total cattle slaughter of 669,000 head last week was 29,000 head more than the previous week. Estimated year-to-date total cattle slaughter of 12.9 million head is 757,000 head more (+6.2%) than last year’s pandemic-ravaged pace. Estimated beef production last week was 550.7 million lbs., which was 23.1 million lbs. more than the previous week.

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 5¢ lower. 

Soybean futures closed 7¢ to 14¢ lower.

May 23rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 21, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on moderate demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live trade continued at $120/cwt. in Nebraska, which is steady with the previous week. Dressed trade earlier in the week was at $190-$191, which was steady to $1 lower.

Although too few to trend, there were some live trades in the western Corn Belt at $120 and some in the beef at $191. Prices last week were at mostly $120 and $188-$191, respectively.

Trade was limited on light demand in Kansas with a few live trades at $119, steady with earlier in the week but steady to $1 lower than last week.

Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on very light demand. Earlier in the week live trades were at $119-$120 in the Texas Panhandle, which was steady to 50¢ higher than last week.

Feeder Cattle futures closed and average of $1.54 lower Thursday, pressured by the bounce higher in Corn futures and the dour fed cattle market.

Live Cattle futures closed mixed (average of 22¢ lower to average of 43¢ higher), helped along by stellar wholesale beef prices.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 80¢ higher Thursday afternoon at $324.18/cwt. Select was $1.92 higher at $301.61.

Net U.S. beef export sales added optimism. For the week ending May 13, they were 56,900 metric tons (mt), according to the U.S. Export Sales report from USDA. That’s a market-year high, up noticeably from the prior week and from the previous four-week average. Increases were primarily for the Netherlands, China, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending May 8 was 896 lbs., which was 5 lbs. heavier than the previous week and even with the same week last year, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight was 826 lbs., which was 2 lbs. heavier than the prior week but 3 lbs. lighter than the previous year.

Corn futures closed mostly 12¢ to 13¢ higher through Jly ‘22 and then mostly 3¢ to 4¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly fractionally lower to 3¢ lower.

May 20th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 20, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light to moderate demand in Kansas, Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

For the week, live sales are steady to $1 lower in Kansas at $119/cwt.. steady in Nebraska at $120, and steady to 50¢ higher in the Texas Panhandle at $119-$120. Dressed trade in Nebraska is steady to $1 lower at $190-$191.

Slaughter steers sold steady to $1 higher at the Sioux Falls Regional fat auction Wednesday. Slaughter heifers traded $1-$2 higher. There were 246 Choice 3-4 steers weighing an average of 1,536 lbs., bringing an average of $120.57/cwt.

Feeder Cattle futures were mostly higher Wednesday, buoyed by pressure in grain markets. They closed an average of 85¢ higher (10¢ to $1.22 higher), except for 62¢ lower in spot May. 

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed as traders balanced sluggish cash prices and cattle movement with expectations for lower boxed beef prices after Memorial Day buying ends. They closed an average of 34¢ lower, except for an average of 22¢ higher in the front three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 4¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $323.38/cwt. Select was 64¢ higher at $299.69

Corn futures closed mixed, from 4¢ lower to 1¢ higher with most of the pressure in nearby contracts.

Soybean futures closed mostly 21¢ to 36¢ lower through Jly ‘22 and then mostly 6¢ to 10¢ lower.

May 19th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 19, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in the Southern Plains through Tuesday afternoon at $119-$120/cwt. That was steady in Kansas and steady to 50¢ higher in the Texas Panhandle. Although too few to trend, there were a few live trades at $120 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt, mainly steady with the prior week.

Feeder Cattle futures weakened amid higher Corn futures prices Tuesday.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 66¢ lower, except for 40¢ higher in the back contract.

Live Cattle futures closed mainly higher on Tuesday, with support from a bounce higher in Lean Hog futures and the relentless climb in wholesale beef values. There were also reports that Argentina banned exporting beef for the next 30 days.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 90¢ higher (22¢ to $1.40 higher), except for an average of 21¢ lower in two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.72 higher Tuesday afternoon at $323.34/cwt. Select was $2.16 higher at $299.05

Corn futures closed mostly 6¢ to 9¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 6¢ to 8¢ higher after 1¢ to 13¢ lower in the front three contracts.

May 18th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 18, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in Kansas and the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill. Depending on the region last week, live prices were generally $1-$2 higher at $119-$121/cwt. on a live basis and at $188-$191 in the beef.

Feeder Cattle futures gained to start the week as Corn futures maintained their lower pace, in relative terms.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.14 higher (37¢ to $1.60 higher).

Live Cattle futures were mixed on Monday, though as the slower pace of slaughter cork potential.

Live Cattle futures closed mixed, from an average of 29¢ lower to an average of 20¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.68 higher Monday afternoon at $319.62/cwt. Select was $3.70 higher at $296.89.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ higher, except for 8.6¢ higher in new spot Jly and 3¢ to 5¢ lower in most new crop contracts.

Soybean futures closed mostly 1¢ to 4¢ lower.

May 17th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 17, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on light demand.

Live prices last week were 50¢ to $1.50 higher in the Texas Panhandle at $119.00-$119.50/cwt., steady to $1 higher in Kansas at $119-$120, $2 higher in Nebraska at $120, and $1 higher in the western Corn Belt at $118-$120. Live prices in Colorado two weeks ago were at $119-$120.

Dressed prices were $1-$4 higher in Nebraska last week at $191. Prices were at $187-$190 in the western Corn Belt the prior week.

Through Thursday, the five-area direct average steer price was $1.35 higher than the previous week at $119.70/cwt., on a live basis. The average five-area direct dressed steer price was $2.01 higher at $190.48.

Feeder Cattle futures mostly gained back on Friday what was lost in the previous session, helped by continued pressure on grain markets.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 52¢ higher, except for an average of 30¢ lower in the back two contracts.

Live Cattle futures mostly extended losses, amid stagnant cash trade and softer Lean Hog futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 44¢ lower, except for an average of 12¢ higher in the back three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 16¢ higher Friday afternoon at $316.94/cwt. Select was $2.72 lower at $293.19.

Estimated total cattle slaughter for the week was 2,000 head more than the prior week at 640,000 head. Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 12.2 million head is 658,000 more than the pandemic-ravaged harvest the same week last year. Estimated beef production for the week of 527.6 million lbs. was 300,000 lbs. more than the previous week. Year-to-date estimated beef production of 10.2 billion lbs. is 660.8 million lbs. more than the same time last year.

Forecast rain in Brazil and the U.S. Corn Belt, reopening barge traffic on the Mississippi River and chatter about private analysts projecting significantly more corn acres all added pressure to Corn futures Friday.

Corn futures closed mostly 13¢ to 15¢ lower, after 20¢ to 34¢ lower in the front three contracts.

Soybean futures closed mostly 2¢ to 6¢ higher, except for 8¢ lower in spot May.

May 15th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 14, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Kansas, Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on very light demand.

So far this week, live trade is $1 higher in Kansas at $119-$120/cwt., 50¢ to $1 higher in the Texas Panhandle at $119.00 to $119.50, steady to $1 higher in Nebraska at $120 and unevenly steady in the western Corn Belt at $118-$120. Dressed trade is steady to $1 higher in Nebraska at $191.

Live Cattle futures plunged Thursday. Besides the break in Lean Hog futures, likely explanations for the reversal include sluggish cattle slaughter due in part to pandemic safety measures, but also reports that labor availability is adding constraint. Achieving feedlot currentness becomes more challenged.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $2.40 lower ($1.95 lower at the back to $3.00 lower in spot Jun).

That was too much for Feeder Cattle to withstand, despite the sharp selloff in Corn.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 48¢ lower (2¢ to 87¢ lower), except for 70¢ higher in spot May.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.70 higher Thursday afternoon at $316.78/cwt. Select was $1.25 lower at $295.91

The average dressed steer weighing for the week ending May 1 was 891 lbs., which was 5 lbs. lighter than the previous week and 2 lbs. lighter than last year, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 824 lbs. was 1 lb. lighter than the previous week and 2 lbs. lighter than the same week last year.

Improved weather conditions, including moisture in the Corn Belt forecast, and the previous day’s World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates applied heavy pressure to grain futures Thursday.

Corn futures closed 33¢ to 40¢ lower through Jly ‘22 and then mostly 22¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 45¢ to 58¢ lower through Jan ‘22, then mostly 15¢ to 29¢ lower.

May 13th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 13, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in the Southern Plains through Wednesday afternoon. Live prices were steady to $1.50 higher in the Texas Panhandle at mostly $119/cwt. There were a few live trades in Kansas at $120, but too few to trend; $119 last week.

Trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska. Dressed trade was at $191, steady with the previous day and $1 to $3 higher than last week. There were a few live trades at $120, but too few to trend; $118 last week.

Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on light demand.

Live prices in the western Corn Belt Tuesday were $118-$120, compared to $119 last week. Dressed prices last week were $187-$190.

Cattle feeders offered 2,469 head in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange Auction. Of those, 1,588 head sold (1,114 heifers and 474 steers) for a weighted average price of $119.93/cwt., via live weight and bid-the-grid. The majority was from Texas.

Slaughter steers sold $1-$2 higher at Sioux Falls Regional in South Dakota and slaughter heifers traded steady to $1 higher. There were 168 Choice 3-4 steers weighing an average of 1,534 lbs., bringing an average of $119.56.

Choice steers and heifers sold $4.25 to $5.75 higher at the fat auction in Tama, IA. There were 152 Choice 2-4 steers weighing an average of 1,442 lbs., bringing an average of $125.65.

Feeder Cattle futures continued their nascent rally Wednesday, supported by more optimistic projections of the balance sheet for corn, in the monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates. Live Cattle closed narrowly mixed with some likely profit taking and sharply lower outside markets.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 38¢ higher, except unchanged in two contracts and down an average of 12¢ in two.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.79 higher ($1.42 higher at the front of the board to $2.20 higher at the back).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.71 higher Wednesday afternoon at $315.08/cwt. Select was 82¢ higher at $297.16.

The monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (see below) stoked Soybean futures Wednesday, but dampened new-crop Corn futures.

Corn futures closed mostly 13¢ to 18¢ lower through the new crop year and then mostly 2¢ to 9¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 11¢ to 23¢ higher through Jan ‘22, then mostly 15¢ to 17¢ lower.

May 12th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 12, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light to moderate demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Although too few transactions to trend, there were a few dressed trades in Nebraska at $191/cwt., which was $1-$3 higher than last week; a few lives trades in the western Corn Belt at $120, which was $1-$3 higher. Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on light demand or at a standstill.

Cattle futures maintained gains from the previous session, supported by the outlook for higher cash prices and continued wholesale strength.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.14 higher (40¢ to $1.70 higher). 

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 25¢ higher, except for 12¢ lower in spot May. 

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.26 higher Tuesday afternoon at $312.37/cwt. Select was $2.58 higher at $296.34

Grain futures recovered from sharp losses the previous day to surge ahead again in the front months, with likely profit taking and positioning ahead of Wednesday’s monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates.

Corn futures closed 10¢ to 11¢ higher in the front two contracts, and then mostly 2¢ to 5¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 16¢ to 27¢ higher through Jan ‘22,  then mostly 4¢ to 11¢ higher.

May 11th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 11, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices last week were at $117.50-$119.00/cwt. in the Texas Panhandle, $119 in Kansas, $118 in Nebraska and $117-$119 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were $187-$190.

Rain in the Corn Belt pressured Corn futures Monday, opening the gate for Cattle futures to trade higher and begin taking a swipe at extremely oversold conditions.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.03 higher, an average of $1.46 higher across the front half of the board and then an average of 61¢ higher, except unchanged in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $3.36 higher ($2.35 higher toward the back to $4.42 higher toward the front).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.23 higher at $309.11/cwt. Select was $3.49 higher at $293.76.

Corn futures closed 20¢ to 27¢ lower through Jly ‘22, and then mostly 4¢ to 9¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 8¢ to 9¢ lower, but as much as 19¢ lower

May 10th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 10, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in Kansas through Friday afternoon. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices for the week were steady to 50¢ lower in the Texas Panhandle at $117.50-$119/cwt., steady in Kansas at $119, $1-$2 lower in Nebraska at $118 and steady to $1 lower in the western Corn Belt at$118-$119. Dressed trade was $1-$2 lower in Nebraska at $188-$190 and steady to $4 lower in the western Corn Belt at $187-$190.

Feeder Cattle futures closed mostly higher Friday, but off of session highs, in the face of increasing front-month Corn futures. Live Cattle futures tagged along.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 32¢ higher in five contracts and then unchanged to 5¢ lower

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 65¢ higher through the front five contracts (27¢ to $1.25 higher) and then unchanged to 27¢ lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 49¢ lower at $305.88/cwt. Select was 91¢ higher at $290.27

Total estimated cattle slaughter for the week ending May 7 was 638,000 head, which was 11,000 head fewer than the previous week. Total estimated beef production of 527.3 million lbs. was 10 million lbs. less week to week.

Corn futures closed mostly 11¢ to 13¢ higher through Jly ‘22, and then mostly 2¢ to 3¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 15¢ to 25¢ higher through May ‘22, and then mostly 9¢ to 13¢ higher.

May 9th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 7, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in Kansas through Thursday afternoon. Live prices were steady with the previous day at $119/cwt., according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Elsewhere, trade was limited on light demand with too few transactions to trend.

Earlier in the week, live prices were at $117.50 to $119.00 in the Texas Panhandle, at $118 in Nebraska and at $118 to $119 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $187 to $190. Live prices in Colorado last week were at $119-$120.

Feeder Cattle futures gave back everything gained in the previous session as corn prices surged higher yet again on Thursday. Live Cattle futures extended modest gains, supported by blooming wholesale beef values and a sizable gain in open interest the previous day.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 66¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.02 lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.59 higher Thursday afternoon  at $306.37/cwt. Select was $3.18 higher at $289.36

The average dressed steer weighing for the week ending Apr. 24 was 896 lbs., according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 2 lbs. lighter than the previous week. The average dressed heifer weight of 825 lbs. was 12 lbs. lighter. Beef production was 16.9 million lbs. at 547.4 million lbs.

Corn futures closed 10¢ to 20¢ higher from Jly ‘21 to Jly ‘22, mostly 6¢ to 8¢ higher in other contracts.

Soybean futures closed 20¢ to 28¢ higher through Mar ‘22, and then mostly 11¢ to 13¢ higher.

May 6th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 6, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from a standstill to mostly limited on light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

So far this week, live prices in Nebraska are $1-$2 lower than last week at $118/cwt. Dressed prices are $1-$2 lower at $188-$190.

Live prices in the western Corn Belt this week are steady to $2 lower at $118-$119. Dressed prices are steady to $4 lower at $187-$190.

Last week, live prices were at $118-$119 in the Southern Plains and at $119-$120 in Colorado.

Cattle feeders offered 1,906 head (12 lots) in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. Of those, 1,091 head (6 lots) sold for mostly $118.50 to $119/cwt., steady with the previous week’s country trade.

At Sioux Falls Regional in South Dakota, fat steers and heifers sold $3-$5 lower. There were 223 Choice 2-3 steers weighing an average of 1,433 lbs., bringing an average of $115.97/cwt., which was $2-$3 lower than established country trade.

Cattle futures found some footing on Wednesday, helped along by technical support and oversold conditions.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.44 higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.86 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.56 higher Wednesday afternoon at $304.78/cwt. Select was $2.27 higher at $286.18

Corn futures closed 20¢ to 24¢ higher from near Sep to Jly ‘22, mostly 5¢ to 7¢ higher in other contracts.

Soybean futures closed mostly 15¢ to 19¢ higher, except for 4¢ to 9¢ higher in the front three contracts.

May 5th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 5, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was light to moderate on moderate demand in Nebraska through Tuesday afternoon. Live prices were steady to 50¢ higher than the previous day at $118/cwt., which was $1-$2 lower than last week. Dressed prices were $1-$2 lower at $188-$190.

Trade in the western Corn Belt was light to moderate on moderate demand. Live prices were steady to $3 lower than last week at $117-$119. There were a few dressed trades at $187-$190, but too few to trend; $190-$191 last week.

Elsewhere, trade was limited on light demand. Live prices in the Southern Plains last week were at $118-$119. Prices in Colorado last week were $119-$120.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.92 higher at $301.22/cwt. Select was 12¢ higher at $283.91

Feeder Cattle futures and front-month Live Cattle wilted Tuesday, pressured by higher feed costs and plentiful fed cattle supplies.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 82¢ lower across a broad range, from an average of $1.52 lower in the front four contracts to an average of 26¢ lower across the rest of the board.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $3.26 lower.

Grain futures popped higher Tuesday as the market continues trying to buy more acres. That was despite what appeared to be a production-friendly planting report.

Corn futures closed mostly 13¢ to 18¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 12¢ to 18¢ higher.

May 4th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 4, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska through Monday afternoon. There were a few live trades at $117.50 to $118.00/cwt. but too few to trend. Elsewhere, trade ranged from mostly inactive on light demand to a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

The average five-area direct fed steer price last week was $118.89/cwt. on a live basis, which was $2.47 less than the previous week. The average steer price in the beef was $1.67 less at $190.44.

Cattle futures managed to fade stronger pressure early to close mixed on Monday with most of the pressure in nearby contracts.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 23¢ higher, except for $1.27 and 27¢ lower in the front two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 69¢ higher (5¢ to $1.40 higher), except for an average of 27¢ lower in three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.80 higher Monday afternoon at $299.30/cwt. Select was 74¢ higher at $283.

Corn futures closed mixed; mostly fractionally lower to 2¢ higher, except for 7¢ lower and 6¢ higher in the front two contracts.

Soybean futures closed 4¢ to 10¢ lower through the front three contracts, then mostly 2¢ to 5¢ higher through Aug ’22; mostly fractionally lower across the rest of the board.

May 3rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—May 3, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains and Colorado through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on light demand with too few transactions to trend.

For the week, live prices were steady to $2 lower in the Southern Plains at $118-$119/cwt., $1-$2 lower in Nebraska at $119-$120, $2 lower in Colorado at $119 and $2-$3 lower in the western Corn Belt at $119. Dressed trade was $1-$2 lower in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt at $190-$191.

Continued increase in wholesale beef values helped Live Cattle futures mostly advance Friday, despite the week’s anemic cash trade and another surge higher in Corn futures, which upended Feeder Cattle once again.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 87¢ higher, except for $3.47 lower in expiring Apr.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.43 lower, from 10¢ lower at the back to $3.12 lower toward the front.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.74 higher Friday afternoon at $296.50/cwt. Select was $3.26 higher at $283.05

Total estimated cattle slaughter for the week ending May 1 was 649,000 head, which was 16,000 head fewer than the previous week, according to USDA.

Corn futures closed 13¢ to 38¢ higher through Jly ‘22, and then mostly 5¢ to 9¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 20¢ to 28¢ higher through Jan ‘22, and then mostly 12¢ to 18¢ higher.

May 2nd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 30, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Texas Panhandle and Colorado through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was limited on light demand with too few transactions to trend.

So far this week, live prices in the Texas Panhandle are $1-$2 lower than last week in the Southern Plains at $118-$119/cwt., $2-$4 lower in the Northern Plains at $119-$120 and $1-$4 lower in the western Corn Belt at $119. Dressed trade is $1-$4 lower in Nebraska at $188-$191 and $1-$2 lower in the western Corn Belt at $191-$192.

Another day of softer Corn futures prices, after the front of the board, helped Cattle futures mostly extend gains on Thursday.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 45¢ higher, except for an average of 14¢ lower in three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 72¢ higher.

Corn futures closed fractionally lower to 5¢ lower, except for 15¢ and 4¢ higher in the front two contracts.

Soybean futures closed 8¢ to 15¢ lower through Jan ‘22, and then mostly 2¢ lower.

April 29th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 29, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was moderate on moderate demand in the Texas Panhandle and Nebraska through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices in the Texas Panhandle were $1-$2 lower than last week at $118-$119/cwt.

Live sales in Nebraska were $2-$3 lower at $119-$120. Dressed trade was $1-$4 lower at $188-$191.

Elsewhere, trade was slow on light demand, with too few transactions to trend.

So far this week, live sales in Kansas are $2 lower at $118-$119 and $3-$4 lower in Colorado at $119.

In the western Corn Belt last week, live prices were at $120-$123 and dressed prices were at $192.

Cattle feeders offered 3,231 head (19 lots) in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. Of those, just 287 head (three lots) sold, all from Texas and all on a live-weight basis. The price was $119/cwt. for two lots of steers and $117.75 for a lot of heifers.

Lower cash prices and less packer processing than expected recently helped pressure Cattle futures Wednesday, despite softer Corn futures and oversold conditions.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.04 lower, except for 57¢ higher in spot Apr.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.25 lower, from 32¢ lower at the front to $1.72 lower at the back.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.51 higher Wednesday afternoon at $292.50/cwt. Select was 53¢ lower at $279.00

Corn futures closed 9¢ to 15¢ lower through Sep ‘22 and then 4¢ to 6¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 13¢ to 14¢ lower through Aug ‘22, except for 15¢  higher in spot May, and then mostly 7¢ lower.

April 28th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 28, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from mostly inactive on very light demand to a standstill through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Feeder Cattle futures closed mixed across a broad range Tuesday, helped along by a day of respite from rising new-crop Corn futures. Live Cattle softened as traders await cash direction.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 39¢ lower, except for 15¢ higher in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed mixed, from an average of 51¢ higher in five contracts (10¢ to $1.45 higher) to an average of 57¢ lower (7¢ to $1.40 lower).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $5.79 higher at $290.99/cwt. Select was $5.18 higher at $279.53

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 7¢ lower, expect for 15¢ higher in spot May and 2¢ higher in back contracts.

Soybean futures closed 18¢ to 19¢ lower through the front six contracts and then 6¢ to 16¢ lower.

April 27th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 27, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from mostly inactive on very light demand to a standstill through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices last week ranged from $118-$120 in the Southern Plains to $121 in the Northern Plains  to $120-$122 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was $2-$4 lower at $192.

The five-area direct fed steer price was 67¢ lower on a live basis last week at $121.36/cwt. The average steer price in the beef was $3.43 lower at $192.11.

Cattle futures closed mixed Monday as another surge in Corn futures weighed on Feeder Cattle.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 69¢ higher (35¢ to $1.10 higher).

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 39¢ lower (15¢ to $1.10 lower), except for an average of 31¢ higher in two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.43 higher Monday afternoon at $285.20/cwt. Select was $2.22 higher at $274.35

Total estimated cattle slaughter last week of 665,000 head was 20,000 head more than the previous week, according to USDA. Total estimated beef production was 20 million lbs. more at 550.2 million lbs.

Corn futures closed 15¢ to limit up 25¢ higher through Jly ‘22, and then mostly 8¢ to 9¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 21¢ to 26¢ higher.

April 26th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 26, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices last week ranged from steady to $2 lower in the Southern Plains at $118-$120/cwt. to $1-$5 lower in the Northern Plains at $121; steady to $4 lower in the western Corn Belt at $120-$122. Dressed trade was $2-$4 lower at $192.

Cattle futures closed higher Friday, supported by oversold conditions and a reprieve from another day of higher corn prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 67¢ higher (12¢ to 92¢ higher), except for 47¢ and 12¢ lower in the front two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.42 higher (65¢ to $1.67 higher).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.46 higher at $283.77/cwt. Select was $1.56 lower at $272.13

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 4¢ lower, except for 5¢ and 1¢ higher in the front two contracts.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 6¢ higher through Nov ‘22, and then fractionally lower to 2¢ lower.

April 25th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 23, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on moderate demand in the Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live trade in Nebraska was at $121/cwt., which was $1-$5 lower than last week. Dressed trade was $4 lower at $192.

In the western Corn Belt, at $121-$122, which was steady to $2 lower than last week. Dressed trade was $2-$4 lower at $192.

Trade was limited on light demand in in Colorado. Live prices were $1-$2 lower at $121.

Trade was mostly inactive on light demand in the Southern Plains. For the week, prices are steady in the Texas Panhandle at $120 and steady to $2 lower in Kansas at $118-$120.

Cattle futures—especially Feeder Cattle—crumbled beneath the weight of surging Corn futures.

Corn futures closed 20¢ to limit up 25¢ in the front three contracts, 15¢ to 16¢ higher through the next four and then mostly 5¢ to 7¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 28¢ to 36¢ higher in the front six contracts, and then mostly 22¢ to 27¢ higher.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.12 lower (85¢ lower at the back to $1.45 in spot Apr).

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.70 lower ($1.45 higher at the back to $3.55 lower).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.12 lower (85¢ lower at the back to $1.45 in spot Apr).

Net U.S. beef export sales of 24,600 metric tons (mt) for 2021 were 57% more than the previous week and 38% more than the prior four-week average, according to USDA’s weekly U.S. Export Sales report for the week ending Apr. 15. Increases were primarily for South Korea, Japan, China, Mexico and Taiwan.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.85 higher Thursday afternoon at $282.31/cwt. Select was $1.81 higher at $273.69

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Apr. 10 was 900 lbs., according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 6 lbs. heavier than the prior week and 4 lbs. heavier than the same week last year. The average dressed heifer weight of 829 lbs. was 3 lbs. lighter than the prior week but 3 lbs. heavier than the prior year.

April 22nd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 22, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in the Southern Plains, Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices were mainly steady in the Texas Panhandle at $120/cwt. and steady to $1 lower in Kansas at $119-$120. Although too few to trend, there were some trades in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt at $123.

In Nebraska last week, prices were $122-$126 on a live basis and at $196 in the beef.

In the western Corn Belt last week, prices were $122-$124 on a live basis and at $194-$196 in the beef.

Live prices in Colorado last week were at $122-$123.

Cattle feeders offered 3,470 head (29 lots) in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. Of those, 1,517 head (7 lots) sold. Six lots from the Southern Plains brought $120/cwt., which was steady to $1 lower than negotiated trade in the region last week. One lot of 457 steers from Nebraska brought $124, which was at the mid point of last week’s negotiated price range.

Cattle futures gave back what they gained in the previous session, and then some, pressured by yet another surge in grain futures prices and disappointing early cash prices. Perhaps there was also some positioning ahead of Friday’s monthly Cattle on Feed report.

As mentioned in Cattle Current Tuesday, the report will likely show March placements significantly higher than last year. Part of that has to do with anemic placements the previous year as the pandemic took hold. However, disrupted placements in February, due to the widespread winter storm and power outages will probably add to the tally.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 92¢ lower (20¢ lower at the back to $1.95 lower toward the front).

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.29 lower ($1.97 to $3.17 lower), except for 15¢ lower in spot Apr.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.20 higher Wednesday afternoon at $280.46/cwt. Select was $1.41 higher at $271.88.

Corn futures closed 14¢ to 19¢ higher in the front two contracts, 6¢ to 9¢ higher through the next five and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 14¢ to 25¢ higher in the front four contracts, and then mostly 8¢ to 10¢ higher.

April 21st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 21, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week, live prices were at $120/cwt. in the Texas Panhandle, $120-$121 in Kansas, $122-$126 in Nebraska, $122-$123 in Colorado and at $122-$124 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $196 in Nebraska and at $194-$196 in the western Corn Belt.

Cattle futures finally found some traction Tuesday, even in the face of surging Corn futures. Besides being oversold, the need for fed cattle prices to rise with long-term higher feed costs could have something to do with the transition.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.04 higher (22¢ to $1.60 higher).

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.30 higher (30¢ to $1.75 higher), except for 15¢ lower in spot Apr.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.09 higher Tuesday afternoon at $278.26/cwt. Select was $1.34 higher at $270.47.

Grain futures surged higher again Tuesday, helped along by a building weather premium based on dryness in Brazil and in the U.S. Northern Plains.

Although this week’s cold snap likely will stall planting in some parts of the U.S., corn planting was on par with the five-year average of 8%, as of Apr. 18, according to the most recent USDA Crop Progress report. Soybean planting was 1% ahead of average at 3%.

Corn futures closed 8¢ to 14¢ higher through Jly ‘22, and then mostly 5¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 19¢ to 22¢ higher through the front three contracts, 15¢ higher through the next five and then mostly 10¢ to 13¢ higher. 

April 20th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 20, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week, live prices were at $120/cwt. in the Texas Panhandle, $120-$121 in Kansas, $122-$126 in Nebraska, $122-$123 in Colorado and at $122-$124 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $196 in Nebraska and at $194-$196 in the western Corn Belt.

Cattle futures closed lower again Monday, especially Feeder Cattle as Corn futures continued to climb higher.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 45¢ lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average $1.51 lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 12¢ higher Monday afternoon at $276.17/cwt. Select was 3¢ higher at $269.13.

Corn futures closed 6¢ to 8¢ higher through Sep ‘22, and then mostly 3¢ to 4¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 16¢ higher through the front five contracts, 6¢ to 9¢ higher through the next four contracts and then mostly 1¢ to 3¢ higher. 

April 19th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 19, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from limited to mostly inactive on light demand through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

For the week, live prices were steady in the Texas Panhandle at $120/cwt., steady to $1 higher in Nebraska at $123-$124, unevenly steady in Colorado at $122 and $1 lower in the western Corn Belt at $122-$124. Dressed prices were $1 higher in Nebraska at $196; steady to $1 lower at $194-$196 in the western Corn Belt.

Cattle futures closed lower again Friday, although the pace of decline was less than in recent sessions. Besides feed costs and sluggish cash price progress, there’s also concern about the recently slower slaughter pace and the potential to back up some cattle.

Estimated total cattle slaughter the week ending April 16 was 640,000 head, according to USDA. That was 1,000 head fewer than the previous week. Estimated year-to-date total cattle slaughter of 9.64 million head, is 35,000 head fewer (-0.36%). Estimated year-to-date beef production of 8.06 billion lbs. is 74.9 million lbs. more (+0.94%) than the same time last year.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 61¢ lower, except for 10¢ higher in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average 73¢ lower (30¢ to $1.00 lower).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 57¢ lower on Friday at $276.05/cwt. Select was 67¢ higher at $269.10.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 4¢ lower through the front three contracts, and then mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 8¢ to 15¢ higher through the front four contracts, and then mostly 3¢ to 6¢ higher.

April 17th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 16, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in the Texas Panhandle through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live prices were steady with last week at $120/cwt.

Elsewhere, trade was slow with moderate demand.

Live prices were steady to $1 higher in Kansas at $120-$121 and steady to $3 higher in Nebraska at $123-$126. Dressed trade was steady to $1 higher at $196.

Live trade was at $120-$123 in Colorado last week; $123-$125 in the western Corn Belt.

Cattle futures closed lower again Thursday, pressured by feed costs, disappointing early cash fed cattle prices and limit down moves in Lean Hog futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 57¢ lower. 

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average $1.04 lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.71 higher Thursday afternoon at $276.62/cwt. Select was $1.12 higher at $268.43.

The average dressed steer weight was 894 lbs., the week ending April 3, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 5 lbs. lighter than the previous week but 5 lbs. heavier than the prior year. The average dressed heifer weight of 832 lbs. was 2 lbs. heavier than the prior week and 7 lbs. heavier than the previous year.

Net U.S. beef export sales of 15,700 metric tons (MT) were 14% less than the prior week and 23% less than the previous four-week average, according to the U.S. Export Sales report for the week ending April 8. Increases were primarily for Japan , China, South Korea and Mexico.

Corn futures closed mixed, mostly 1¢ higher to 2¢ lower.

Net U.S. corn export sales (2020-21) of 327,700 mt were down 57% from the previous week and 81% from the prior four-week average.

Soybean futures closed 3¢ to 9¢ higher through Aug ‘22, and then mostly fractionally lower to 1¢ lower, except for 8¢ higher in the back three contracts.

Net U.S. soybean export sales (2020-21) of 1,500 mt were a market-year low, down noticeably from the previous week and from the prior four-week average.

April 15th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 15, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade in all major cattle feeding regions ranged from a standstill to mostly inactive on very light demand through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Cattle futures closed lower again Wednesday, but off of session lows. Pressure included the jump in grain prices, lack of cash direction and recently declining open interest. Live Cattle open interest declined 7,303 contracts week to week on Tuesday.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 48¢ lower (15¢ to 87¢ lower). 

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average $1.32 lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.80 higher Wednesday afternoon at $272.91/cwt. Select was 77¢ higher at $267.31.

Grain futures rallied higher Wednesday, fueled by forecast cold weather in the U.S. Corn Belt for the next couple of weeks and continued dryness in South America.

Corn futures closed 10¢ to 14¢ higher through the front three contracts and then mostly 5¢ to 6¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 20¢ higher through Jly ‘22, and then mostly 8¢ higher.

April 14th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 14, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade in all major cattle feeding regions ranged from a standstill to mostly inactive on very light demand through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices last week were at $120/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $120-$123 in Colorado, $123 in Nebraska and $123-$125 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $195-$196.

Cattle futures closed Lower Tuesday, especially Feeder Cattle, challenged by technical correction and the relentless march higher of corn prices. As well, wholesale beef values stalled the last couple of days.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 66¢ lower (15¢ to $1.17 lower). 

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average $2.09 lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.30 lower Tuesday afternoon at $270.11/cwt. Select was 38¢ higher at $266.54.

Corn futures closed 10¢ to 11¢ higher through the front three contracts and then mostly 4¢ to 7¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 7¢ higher across the front half of the board, and then fractionally lower.

April 13th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 13, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices last week were $3 higher in the Southern Plains at $120, mostly $5 higher in Nebraska at mostly $123, $5 higher in the western Corn Belt at $123-$125 and at $120-$123 in Colorado, where there was no established market the previous week. Dressed prices were $5 higher in Nebraska at $195 and $6-$7 higher in the western Corn Belt at $195-$196.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed on Monday, firming after the profit-taking selloff that ended last week. Lower front-month Corn futures prices added support.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 31¢ lower, except for an average of 9¢ higher in three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 32¢ higher, except for 25¢ lower in spot Apr.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 76¢ lower Monday afternoon at $271.41/cwt. Select was $2.09 higher at $266.16.

Corn futures closed 3¢ to 8¢ lower through the front three contracts and then mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 12¢ to 21¢ lower through the front six contracts, and then mostly 5¢ to 9¢ lower.

April 12th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 12, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from a standstill to limited on light demand through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Although too few to trend there were some trades in the western Corn Belt at $125/cwt. on a live basis and at $196 in the beef.

In established trade for the week, live prices were $3 higher in the Southern Plains at $120, $5-$7 higher in Nebraska at $125, $5 higher in the western Corn Belt at $123-$125 and $4-$7 higher in Colorado (compared to two weeks earlier) at $120-$123. Dressed prices were $5-$7 higher at $195.

Week to week on Thursday, the five-area direct average steer prices was $4.42 higher at $121.87. The average dressed steer price was $195.21, which was $6.53 higher.

Cattle futures closed lower Friday, amid active trade and likely profit taking from the strong week-to-week gains.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.10 lower (22¢ to $2.45 lower), except for 62¢ higher in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.55 lower (80¢ lower toward the back to $2.37 lower in spot Apr), except for 45¢ higher in the back contract.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.67 higher Friday afternoon at $272.17/cwt. Select was 24¢ higher at $264.07.

Estimated total cattle slaughter the week ending Apr. 10 was 641,000 head, according to USDA, which was 32,000 head more than the previous week. Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 9.0 million head is 184,000 head fewer (-2.0%) than the same time last year. Estimated year-to-date beef production of 7.54 billion lbs. is 54.2 million lbs. less (-0.7%) than a year earlier.

Grain futures were mixed Friday, reacting to USDA’s monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ higher, except for 2¢ lower in spot May.

Soybean futures closed 9¢ to 12¢ lower through the front six contracts, and then mostly 2¢ to 7¢ lower.

April 10th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 9, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from a standstill to limited on light demand through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

For the week so far, live prices are $3 higher in the Southern Plains at $120/cwt., $5 higher in Nebraska at $123, $3-$5 higher in the western Corn Belt at $121-$125 and $4-$7 higher in Colorado (compared to two weeks earlier) at $120-$123. Dressed trade is $5-$7 higher at $195.

Feeder Cattle futures closed mostly slightly lower Thursday, pressured by the surge in Corn futures prices.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 52¢ lower (37¢ to $1.07 lower), except for an average of 42¢ higher in the back two contracts.

Live Cattle futures mostly extended gains, with continued support from cash prices and wholesale beef values, as well as expanding open interest. 

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 56¢ higher (35¢ to $1.00 higher), except for an average of 17¢ lower in two nearby contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $4.19 higher Thursday afternoon at $270.50/cwt. Select was $8.64 higher at $263.83.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending March 27 was 899 lbs., according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 2 lbs. lighter than the previous week, but 8 lbs. heavier than the same week last year. The average dressed heifer weight of 830 lbs. was 6 lbs. lighter week to week but 5 lbs. heavier than a year earlier.

Front-month grain futures closed sharply higher Thursday amid likely positioning ahead of USDA’s World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates due out Wednesday.

Corn futures closed 10¢ to 19¢ higher in the front three contracts, 8¢ to 9¢ higher in the next four and then mostly 3¢ to 4¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher, except for 6¢ higher in the front two contracts.

April 8th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 8, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade and demand were moderate in the Southern Plains through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live prices were $3 higher than last week at $120/cwt.

In Nebraska, trade was light on light to moderate demand. Although too few to trend, there were some live sales at $120-$123. Prices there last week were at $118 on a live basis and at $190 in the beef.

Also too few to trend, early live prices in Colorado were at $120-$123. The last established market was two weeks ago at $116.

Last week, in the western Corn Belt, prices were at $118-$120 on a live basis and at $188-$190 dressed.

Cattle feeders offered 4,422 head in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. Of those, 3,277 head sold, all from Texas and Nebraska and all on a live weight basis. Steer prices ranged from $122.00 to $122.75/cwt. in Nebraska and from $120.00 to $120.75 in Texas. Heifer prices ranged from $122.00 to $122.75 in Nebraska and from $120.50 to $121.00 in Texas.

Cattle futures extended gains Wednesday, supported by higher cash fed cattle prices and the continued increase in wholesale beef values. 

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 49¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.11 higher (90¢ to $1.60 higher).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.54 higher Wednesday afternoon at $266.31/cwt. Select was $3.89 higher at $255.19.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 3¢ to 10¢ lower through the front four contracts, and then mostly fractionally mixed.

April 7th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 7, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in Nebraska and the Texas Panhandle through Tuesday afternoon. Elsewhere, trade ranged from limited to mostly inactive on light demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS).

Last week, live prices were at $117/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $118 in Nebraska and $118-$120 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $190 in Nebraska and at $188-$190 in the western Corn Belt.

Cattle futures closed mainly higher Tuesday, buoyed by the bullish rise in wholesale beef values. 

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 30¢ higher (5¢ to $1.35 higher), except for 15¢ lower in the back contract

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 99¢ higher (2¢ to $1.55 higher), except for unchanged in May.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $4.10 higher Tuesday afternoon at $262.77/cwt. Select was $1.44 higher at $251.30.

Corn futures closed mostly 4¢ to 5¢ lower, except for 1¢ higher at either end of the board.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 6¢ higher.

April 6th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April, 6, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS).

Last week, live prices were at $117/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $118 in Nebraska and $118-$120 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $190 in Nebraska and at $188-$190 in the western Corn Belt.

The five-area direct average steer price was $118.08/cwt. last week on a live basis. That was $2.49 more than the prior week. The average five-area direct steer price in the beef was $189.36, which was $4.89 more.

Cattle futures closed sharply higher Monday, supported by stronger cash prices, increasing wholesale beef values and higher outside markets.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.32 higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.07 higher, from $1.35 to $2.57 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $5.82 higher Monday afternoon at $258.67/cwt. Select was $2.89 higher at $249.86.

Corn futures closed mostly 4¢ to 9¢ higher, except for 6¢ lower in the front two contracts.

Soybean futures closed mostly 5¢ to 9¢ higher.

April 5th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 5, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade and demand were moderate in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Friday afternoon. Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on light demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS).

By the end of the week, live prices were $2 higher in the Southern Plains at $117/cwt., $2 higher in Nebraska at mostly $118 (some up to $121) and $3-$4 higher in the western Corn Belt at $119-$120. Dressed trade was $5 higher at $190.

Futures markets were closed Friday, in observance of Good Friday. Feeder Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, week to week on Thursday. Live Cattle futures closed $1.04 higher, buoyed by escalating wholesale beef values, stronger cash prices and continued strength in Lean Hogs.

Choice was boxed beef cutout value $2.88 higher Friday afternoon at $252.85/cwt. Select was $2.27 higher at $246.97.

Estimated total cattle slaughter the week ending April 3 was 609,000 head, which was 40,000 head fewer than the previous week, according to USDA. Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 8.36 million head is 295,000 head fewer (-3.4%) than the same period last year. Estimated year-to-date beef production of 7.00 billion lbs. is 152.7 million lbs. less (-2.1%) than last year.

April 3rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 2, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices were $2 higher in Kansas Thursday at $117/cwt., with moderate trade and demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). For the week, some early live sales traded at $118 in Nebraska and the Texas Panhandle, but too few to trend.

Live prices last week were at $115 in the Texas Panhandle, $116 in Nebraska and $115-$117 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $185.

Cattle futures were mixed Thursday amid likely profit taking and repositioning.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 50¢ lower, except for 35¢ higher in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 66¢ higher, except for unchanged and 17¢ lower in the front two contracts. 

Wholesale beef prices continue to climb. Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.85 higher Thursday afternoon at $249.97/cwt. Select was $6.57 higher at $244.70.

The average dressed steer weight for the week ending Mar. 21 was 901 lbs. according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection repot. That was 3 lbs. lighter than the previous week but 3 lbs. heavier than the same week last year. The average dressed heifer weight of 836 lbs. was 4 lbs. heavier than the previous week but even with the prior year.

Corn futures closed 4¢ to 7¢ higher in the front five new-crop contracts and then fractionally mixed. The two remaining old-crop contracts close 2¢ to 4¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed mixed but mostly 19¢ to 34¢ lower, following the previous session’s limit-up move.

April 1st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—April 1, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska through Wednesday afternoon. Although too few to trend, there were some early live sales at $118/cwt., which was $2 higher than last week. Trade was mostly inactive on light demand in the Southern Plains, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Elsewhere, it was at a standstill.

Buyers of Nebraska cattle in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction also paid $118 for 1,725 head. Overall, cattle feeders offered 4,593 head; 2,038 head sold—all via live weight—for a weighted average price of $117.77.

Live Cattle futures gained on the outlook for higher cash prices, as well as ongoing strength in wholesale beef values.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 82¢ higher, except for unchanged in spot Apr.

Feeder Cattle futures wilted beneath the weight of resurgent grain futures prices, tied to USDA’s Prospective Plantings report (see below).

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.41 lower. 

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.29 higher Wednesday afternoon at $247.12/cwt. Select was $2.21 higher at $238.13.

Grain futures spiked higher Wednesday—especially Corn and Soybeans—based on USDA’s Prospective Plantings report. Producers intend to plant more acres to both crops this year than last, but far fewer than expectations ahead of the report.

Corn futures closed mostly 18¢ higher to limit up 25¢.

Soybean futures closed 44¢ higher to limit up 70¢.

March 31st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 31, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in the Texas Panhandle through Tuesday afternoon. Although too few to trend, there were some early live sales at $116/cwt. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS).

Last week, live prices were at $115/cwt. in the Sothern Plains, mostly $116 in the Northern Plains and at $115-$117 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at mostly $185.

Feeder Cattle futures edged higher Tuesday, helped along by softer Corn futures. Live Cattle were mixed, taking a breather ahead of cash direction.

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from 42¢ lower to 15¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 48¢ higher, except for 25¢ lower and unchanged in the front two contracts. 

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $5.30 higher Tuesday afternoon at $244.83/cwt. Select was $3.42 higher at $235.90.

Corn futures, and especially Soybean futures, closed lower Tuesday with likely profit taking and positioning ahead of USDA’s Prospective Plantings report due out Wednesday.

Corn futures closed mostly 4¢ to 8¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 22¢ to 27¢ lower through the front four contracts, and then mostly 11¢ to 18¢ lower.

March 30th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 30, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains and Northern Plains through Monday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was mostly inactive on very light demand with too few transactions to trend, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS).

Last week, live prices were $1 higher in the Southern Plains at $115/cwt., $2 higher in the Northern Plains at mostly $116 and $1-$2 higher in the western Corn Belt at $115-$117. Dressed trade was $3-$5 higher at $185.

The five-area direct average steer price last week was $115.38/cwt. on a live basis, which was $1.14 higher than the previous week. The five-area direct average steer price in the beef was $184.66,which was $2.98 higher.

Cattle futures bounced higher Monday, amid active trade, extending last week’s gains, with ongoing support from higher wholesale beef values, last week’s  stronger cash prices and softer Corn futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 61¢ higher, except for unchanged and 5¢ lower in the back two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.28 higher, from 15¢ higher toward the back to $2.32 higher toward the front. 

The CME Feeder Cattle Index was $2.10 higher at $138.85.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.87 higher Monday afternoon at $239.53/cwt. Select was $4.73 higher at $232.50.

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 5¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 2¢ lower, except for 5¢ to 7¢ lower in the front three contracts.

March 29th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 29, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains through Friday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was limited on light demand with too few transactions to trend, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS).

For the week, live prices were $1-$2 higher at $115/cwt. in the Southern Plains and $116 in the Northern Plains. Dressed trade was $2-$3 higher in Nebraska at $185. Trade was yet to be established in the western Corn Belt, according to AMS, but various reports suggested trade in the region at as much as $3 higher than the previous week.

Cattle futures continued to edge higher Friday, buoyed by the week’s stronger cash prices and wholesale beef values.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 36¢ higher, except for 20¢ lower in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 39¢ higher, from 15¢ higher toward the back to 90¢ higher in spot Apr. 

Choice boxed beef value was $1.21 higher Friday afternoon at $237.66/cwt. Select was $1.52 higher at $227.77.

Estimated total cattle slaughter the week ending Mar. 26 was 646,000 head, according to USDA. That was 19,000 head more than the previous week, but 39,000 head fewer (-5.69%) than the same week a year earlier. Estimated total year-to-date cattle slaughter of 7.75 million head was 278,000 head fewer (-3.46%) than the same time last year. Estimated year-to-date beef production of 6.50 billion lbs. was 143.1 million lbs. less (-2.15%).

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ higher, except for 3¢ and 6¢ higher at either end of the board.

Soybean futures closed 6¢ to 13¢ lower through the front six contracts, and then mostly 2¢ higher.

March 28th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 26, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade continued through Thursday afternoon, with limited to slow trade on light to moderate demand. For the week, live prices are $1-$2 higher on a live basis at $115/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $115-$116 in Nebraska and $116 in Colorado. Dressed trade in Nebraska is $3-$5 higher at $185. Trade was yet to be established in the western Corn Belt.

Cattle futures continued mostly higher Thursday, supported by stronger cash prices and wholesale beef values.

Net U.S. beef export sales of 18,900 metric tons for the week ending Mar. 18 were 27% less than the previous week but 3% more than the prior four-week average, according to the weekly U.S. Export Sales report. Increases were primarily for Japan, South Korea, China, Taiwan and Chile.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 45¢ higher through the front five contracts, and then unchanged to an average of 18¢ lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 98¢ higher, from 37¢ to $1.80 higher. 

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.61 higher Thursday afternoon at $236.45/cwt. Select was $2.18 higher at $226.25.

The average dressed steer weight of 904 lbs. was 4 lbs. heavier than the prior week and 3 lbs. heavier than the previous year, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report for the week ending Mar. 13. The average dressed heifer weight of 832 lbs. was 1 lb. lighter than the previous week and 3 lbs. lighter than the previous year.

Corn futures closed mostly 2¢ to 4¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 18¢ lower.

March 25th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 25, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was light on light to moderate demand in the Southern Plains through Wednesday afternoon, with live price $1 higher than last week at $115/cwt.

Elsewhere, trade was limited on light demand, according the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were a few live trades in Nebraska at $115-$116, but too few to trend. Prices last week were at $114 in the Northern Plains and at $114-$115 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $180-$182.

Cattle feeders offered 2,633 head in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. Of those, 1,550 head sold for an average price of $115.89/cwt., all via live weight. Texas prices were at $115/cwt. and Nebraska prices were at $116, which was $2 higher than last week’s country trade.

Choice steers and heifers sold $1.50-$2.50 higher at the fat auction in Tama Iowa. There were 67 Choice 2-4 steers weighing an average of 1,487 lbs., brining an average price of $117.15/cwt. That was $2-$3 higher than country trade in the region last week.

At Sioux Falls Regional in South Dakota, though, slaughter steers sold steady to $2 lower and slaughter heifers traded steady to $1 lower. There were 152 Choice 2-3 steers weighing an average of 1,468 lbs., bringing an average of $112.72.

Cattle futures closed higher Wednesday, supported by stronger cash prices and softer Corn futures prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 59¢ higher, except for unchanged in spot Apr.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.32 higher, from 32¢ higher in waning spot Mar to $2.70 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 85¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $234.84/cwt. Select was $1.16 lower at $224.07.

Corn futures closed mostly fractionally lower to 2¢ lower, except for 2¢ and 3¢ higher in the front two contracts.

Soybean futures closed mostly 6¢ to 9¢ higher.

March 24th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 24, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill.

Last week, prices were at $114/cwt. on a live basis in the Southern Plains and Northern Plains, and at $114-$115 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $180-$182.

Cattle futures continued higher Tuesday, supported by rising wholesale beef prices and strength in Lean Hog futures, amid light trade.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 66¢ higher, from 10¢ higher at the back to $1.12 higher toward the front.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 39¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.04 higher Tuesday afternoon at $233.99/cwt. Select was $2.18 higher at $225.23.

Corn futures closed mostly fractionally higher to 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 5¢ to 8¢ higher.

March 23rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 23, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was  at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service, with too few transactions to trend.

Last week, prices were at $114/cwt. on a live basis in the Southern Plains and Northern Plains, and at $114-$115 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $180-$182.

The average five-area direct fed steer price last week was $114.23/cwt. on a live basis, which was 61¢ more than the prior week. The average steer price in the beef was $181.33, which was $2.01 higher.

Cattle futures found some traction Monday amid relatively light trade, following the late-week decline. Support included lower Corn futures, higher outside markets, stronger wholesale beef prices and the neutral Cattle on Feed report.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 40¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 28¢ higher, expect for unchanged in Apr.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 96¢ higher Monday afternoon at $230.95/cwt. Select was $3.10 higher at $223.05.

Corn futures closed 5¢ to 8¢ lower in the front three contracts, and then mostly 2¢ to 3¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 5¢ lower, after 1¢ higher in the front two contracts.

March 22nd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 22, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service, with too few transactions to trend.

Prices last week were steady on a live basis at $114/cwt. in Kansas, steady to $1 higher in Nebraska at $114, $1-$2 higher in the western Corn Belt at $114-$115. Prices were a touch higher than steady in the Texas Panhandle, with the Texas Cattle Feeders Association reporting $114.24 for steers and $114.30 for heifers. Dressed trade was $2 higher in Nebraska and $2-$4 higher in the western Corn Belt at $182.

Cattle futures closed mostly lower Friday with follow-through selling and higher Corn futures prices. That was despite what appears to be fundamental market improvement stemming from higher wholesale beef values and the likelihood for cash fed cattle prices to begin moving higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.38 higher Friday afternoon at $229.99/cwt. Select was $1.84 higher at $219.95.

Estimated total cattle slaughter of 624,000 head for the week ending March 20 were 23,000 head fewer (-0.35%) than the previous week and 36,000 head fewer (-5.45%) than the same week a year earlier. Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 7.1 million head is 244,000 fewer (-3.3%) than the same period a year earlier. Year-to-date estimated total beef production of 5.97 billion lbs. is 110.2 million lbs. less (-1.81%).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 75¢ lower (17¢ to $1.25 lower), except for 12¢ higher in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.06 lower (62¢ to $2.00 lower).

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 3¢ higher, except for 11¢ and 8¢ higher in the front two contracts. 

Soybean futures closed 12¢ to 24¢ higher through Jan ‘22, and then mostly 5¢ to 6¢ higher.

March 20th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 19, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was $2 higher on a dressed basis in Nebraska Thursday at $182.00/cwt., according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. That was on slow trade and light demand, but might suggest front-end inventory is current enough for prices to finally move beyond the rut of the last seven weeks. Live trade in Nebraska was at $114 on Wednesday.

Trade was limited on light demand in most other regions with too few transactions to trend.

On Wednesday, live prices were $2 higher in the western Corn Belt at $114-$115. Dressed trade in the region last week was at $178-$180.

Cattle futures closed sharply lower amid likely technical correction and positioning ahead of Friday’s Cattle on Feed report, despite wholesale beef values gathering some seasonal steam, sharply lower Corn futures and the likelihood that cash fed cattle prices are on the cusp of moving higher.

Pressure also included sharply lower Lean Hog futures, tied to chatter out of China that it’s close to rebuilding its hog herd to pre-ASF levels. That diverges widely from private sector reports citing further ASF challenges.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.92 lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.78 lower (20¢ lower at the back to $3.55 lower).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 14¢ higher Thursday afternoon at $228.61/cwt. Select was 52¢ higher at $218.11.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Mar. 6 was 900 lbs. according to USDA’s weekly Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 1 lb. heavier than the previous week but 3 lbs. lighter than the previous year. The average dressed heifer weight of 833 lbs. was 1 lb. lighter than the previous week but 3 lbs. heavier than the prior year.

Corn and soybean futures closed sharply lower Thursday. The most plausible explanations include rainier forecasts for South America and worries about how many acres might show up in USDA’s Prospective Plantings report due out at the end of the month. There’s also likely some queasiness about U.S. and Chinese officials meeting in Alaska this week.

Corn futures closed 10¢ to 12¢ lower through the front three contracts, and then mostly 3¢ to 7¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 20¢ to 29¢ lower.

March 18th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 20, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in Kansas and Nebraska through Wednesday afternoon. Live trade was steady in Kansas at $114/cwt. and steady to $1 higher in Nebraska at $114.

Elsewhere, trade ranged from limited on light demand, to mostly inactive on very light demand, with too few transactions to trend, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week, live prices were at $114/cwt. in the Southern Plains and Colorado and $112-$113 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $180 in Nebraska and at $178-$180 in the western Corn Belt.

Cattle feeders sold near 1,000 head in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. Those selling—all from Texas except one lot from Nebraska—traded on a live weight basis at $114.50/cwt.

Cattle futures mostly edged higher Wednesday, supported by softer Corn futures after the front two contracts, as well as resurgent Choice wholesale beef values. Perhaps there was also some early positioning against the monthly Cattle on Feed report (see below).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 52¢ higher, from 5¢ higher at the back to $1.22 higher in spot Apr. 

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 39¢ higher (7¢ to $1.32 higher), except for 10¢ and 47¢ lower in the back two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.54 higher Wednesday afternoon at $228.47/cwt. Select was $1.18 lower at $217.59.

Corn futures closed fractionally lower to 2¢ lower, except for 3¢ higher and fractionally higher in the front two contracts.

Soybean futures closed mostly 5¢ to 10¢ lower.

March 17th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 17, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on light demand in the western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, with too few transactions to trend. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week, live prices were at $114/cwt. in the Southern Plains and Colorado, $113-$114 in Nebraska and $112-$113 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $178-$180.

Cattle futures closed mixed Tuesday. There was no cash direction, but Lean Hog futures continue to offer support, as does expanding open interest.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 22¢ higher, except for an average of 62¢ lower in the front two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from an average of 39¢ lower to an average of 9¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.16 higher Tuesday afternoon at $226.93/cwt. Select was 72¢ higher at $218.77.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 4¢ higher through the front three contracts and then mostly fractionally lower.

Soybean futures closed 3¢ higher through the front three contracts and then fractionally higher to 1¢ higher.

March 16th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 16, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week, live prices were at $114/cwt. in the Southern Plains and Colorado, $113-$114 in Nebraska and $112-$113 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $180 in Nebraska and at $178-$180 in the western Corn Belt.

Cattle futures closed higher Monday with Live Cattle supported by growing open interest in the previous session, as well as decent cash trade volume last week.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 76¢ higher (12¢ to $1.35 higher).

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 83¢ higher (32¢ to $1.35 higher).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.10 lower Monday afternoon at $224.77/cwt. Select was $2.22 lower at $218.05.

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 10¢ higher through the front three contracts and then mostly 1¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 3¢ to 7¢ higher through the front four contracts, then mostly unchanged to fractionally lower.  

March 15th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 15, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

For the week, live prices were steady at $114/cwt. in the Southern Plains, steady to $1 higher at $114 in Colorado, steady in Nebraska at $113-$114 and steady to $1 lower in the western Corn Belt at $112-$113. Dressed trade was steady in Nebraska at $180 and steady to $2 lower in the western Corn Belt at $178-$180.

Lower grain futures helped lift Cattle futures on Friday. Perhaps some traders also are returning to the Live Cattle Market, positioning ahead of what appears to be a solid trend higher after first-quarter supplies are whittled and as the U.S. economy expands.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 83¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.52 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 80¢ lower Friday afternoon at $225.87/cwt. Select was 20¢ higher at $220.27.

Total estimated cattle slaughter for the week ending Mar. 13 was 647,000 head, which was 18,000 head fewer than the prior week. Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 6.47 million head is 209,000 head fewer (-3.12%). Estimated beef production so far this year is 5.46 billion lbs., which is 74.8 million lbs. less (-1.35%) than the same time last year.

Corn futures closed mostly 4¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 5¢ higher, after mostly fractionally mixed through Jan ’22.

March 14th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 12, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, with too few transactions to trend. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

For the week, live prices are steady at $114/cwt. in the Southern Plains, steady to $1 higher at $114 in Colorado, steady in Nebraska at $113-$114 and steady to $1 lower in the western Corn Belt at $112-$113. Dressed trade is steady in Nebraska at $180 and steady to $2 lower in the western Corn Belt at $178-$180.

Net U.S. beef export sales for the week ending Mar. 4 were 20,900 metric tons, according to USDA’s weekly U.S. Export Sales report. That was 8% less than the previous week but 17% more than the previous four-week average. Increases were primarily for South Korea, Japan, Mexico, China and Taiwan.

Cattle futures closed mixed Thursday. Live Cattle closed mostly higher, supported by a strong rally in front-month Lean Hog futures. Feeder Cattle futures edged mostly lower with higher Corn futures and the sluggish recovery in cash prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 48¢ higher, except for 5¢ to 30¢ lower in three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 43¢ lower, except for unchanged to 7¢ higher in three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 62¢ lower at $226.67/cwt. Thursday afternoon. Select was 25¢ higher at $220.07.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Feb. 27 was 899 lbs., which was 10 lbs. lighter than the previous week and 2 lbs. heavier year over year, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 834 lbs. was 7 lbs. lighter than the previous week and 1 lb. heavier year over year.

Corn futures closed mostly 2¢ to 4¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 5¢ to 9¢ higher though May ‘22, and then mostly 11¢ to 16¢ higher.

March 11th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 11, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade continued steady with last week in the Southern Plains on Wednesday at $114/cwt., with limited trade and light demand in the Texas Panhandle; limited trade on light to moderate demand in Kansas.

Live trade in Nebraska was light on light to moderate demand at $113 to $114, which was steady with last week, but steady to $1 lower than the previous day. Dressed trade on Tuesday was mainly steady at $180.

In Colorado, live trade was steady with the prior day and week at $114, with slow trade and light demand.

Trade was limited on light demand in the western Corn Belt with too few transactions to trend. Live prices there last week were at $112 to $114; dressed trade at $180.

Cattle feeders offered 1,296 head (9 lots) in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. All were from the Southern Plains, except for one lot in Nebraska. The reserve price was $114/cwt. on all but one lot. None sold. The highest bids were at $113.75.

Cattle futures softened Wednesday, challenged by steady rather than higher cash prices and dwindling wholesale beef values.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 49¢ lower, except for 30¢ higher in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 27¢ lower, except for unchanged in Nov.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.74 lower Wednesday afternoon at $227.29/cwt. Select was $3.98 lower at $219.82.

Grain futures closed lower on Wednesday, amid likely profit taking and with the static to slightly bearish World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates.

Corn futures closed mostly 10¢ to 14¢ lower through the front three contracts, and then mostly 2¢ to 4¢ lower. 

Soybean futures closed 22¢ to 30¢ lower through Jan ‘22, and then mostly 10¢ to 15¢ lower.

March 10th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 10, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in the Northern Plains through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Although too few to trend, there were a few early live sales at $114/cwt., which was steady to $1 higher.

Last week, live prices were at $114 in the Southern Plains, $113-$114/cwt. in the Northern Plains and at $112-$114 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $180.

Cattle futures closed mostly higher Tuesday, buoyed in part by softer Corn futures and increasing chatter that the bottom may finally be in or at least near for cattle prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 33¢ higher, except for an average of 16¢ lower in the back two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.03 higher through the front three contracts, and then from 30¢ lower to 60¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.05 lower Tuesday afternoon at $229.03/cwt. Select was 67¢ higher at $223.80.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ higher, except for 1¢ to 3¢ lower in the front three contracts.

Soybean futures closed mostly 4¢ to 7¢ higher.

March 9th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 9, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill through Monday afternoon, except for mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Prices last week ended up steady on a live basis in the Southern Plains at $114/cwt., steady to $1 lower in the Northern Plains at $113-$114 and steady to $2 lower in the western Corn Belt at $112-$114. Dressed trade was $2 lower at $180.

The five-area average direct steer price last week was 43¢ lower on a live basis at $113.64/cwt. and $1.84 lower in the beef at $179.79.

Cattle futures closed higher Monday, supported by increasing optimism about further reopening the domestic economy and more positive fundamentals on the horizon.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 59¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 61¢ higher, except for 7¢ lower in May.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 25¢ lower Monday afternoon at $231.08/cwt. Select was $2.28 higher at $223.13.

Corn futures closed mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 3¢ to 8¢ higher.

March 8th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 8, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light to moderate demand in Colorado and the western Corn Belt through Friday afternoon. Elsewhere, trade ranged from a standstill to mostly inactive on very light demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

For the week, established trade was steady on a live basis at $114/cwt. in the Southern Plains and Northern Plains. Dressed trade in Nebraska was $2 lower at $180. The previous week, live sales in the western Corn Belt were at $114, with dressed trade at $182.

Total estimated cattle slaughter the week ending March 6 was 665,000 head, which was 1,000 head fewer than the previous week. Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 5.83 million head is 213,000 head fewer (-3.52%) than the same period last year. Estimated beef production so far this year is 4.93 billion lbs., which is 73.8 million lbs. less (-1.48%) year over year.

Cattle futures closed higher Friday, supported by higher outside markets and despite the increase in grain futures. Perhaps support also included expectations that cash fed cattle prices next week will likely edge higher, given the dearth of cash purchases by packers the past two weeks.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 59¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.48 higher (5¢ to $2.50 higher), except for 50¢ lower in spot Mar.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.55 lower Friday afternoon at $231.33/cwt. Select was 83¢ lower at $220.85.

Grain futures closed higher Friday, likely supported by positioning ahead of the next World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates due out Tuesday.

Corn futures closed 11¢ to 15¢ higher in the front three contracts, and then mostly 3¢ to 5¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 10¢ to 19¢ higher.

March 7th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 5, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in Colorado and the Texas Panhandle through Thursday afternoon. Elsewhere, trade was limited on light demand with too few transactions to trend.

For the week so far, trade is steady with last week on a live basis in the Southern Plains and Northern Plains at $114/cwt. Dressed trade in Nebraska is $2 lower at $180. Live sales in the western Corn Belt last week were at $114, with dressed trade at $182.

Cattle futures closed lower Thursday, pressured by the slog for higher cash prices and faltering outside markets. That was despite net U.S. export beef sales for the week ending Feb. 25 up noticeably from the previous week and up 15% from the prior four-week average at 22,600 metric tons (mt), according to the weekly U.S. Export Sales report from USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 41¢ lower, from 2¢ lower at the back to 85¢ lower in spot Apr.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.34 lower, from 75¢ lower at the back to $2.32 lower toward the front.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 85¢ higher Thursday afternoon at $233.88/cwt. Select was $2.56 lower at $221.68.

The average dressed slaughter weight of 909 lbs. the week ending Feb. 20 was 10 lbs. less than the previous week, helped along by the recent winter storm. That was still 9 lbs. heavier year over year, according to the USDA Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 841 lbs. was 9 lbs. lighter than the previous week, but 10 lbs. heavier year over year. Fed cattle slaughter of 439,124 head was 49,097 head fewer (-10.05%) than the same week a year earlier.

Corn futures encountered some pressure in the front months, perhaps tied in part to the previously mentioned weekly U.S. Export Sales report.

Weekly net U.S. corn export sales of 115,900 mt for 2020-21 were a market-year low, down 74% from the previous week and down 96% from the previous four-week average. U.S. net soybean export sales of 334,000 mt were up noticeably from the previous week but 33% less than the previous four-week average.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher, except for 1¢ to 4¢ lower in the front three contracts.

Soybean futures closed 6¢ to 15¢ higher, except for 3¢ to 4¢ higher in the front five contracts.

March 4th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 4, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade and demand were light to moderate in the Southern Plains through Wednesday afternoon at $114/cwt., according to the Agricultural Marketing Service; steady with the previous week. Trade was light on moderate demand in Nebraska with dressed prices $2 lower at $180. Elsewhere, trade was limited on light demand, with too few transactions to trend.

Cattle feeders offered 1,592 head (10 lots) in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. All were from Texas, except for one lot from Nebraska. Of those offered, 757 head sold (four lots), with 167 heifers bringing an average price of $114.08/cwt. and 590 steers bringing an average of $114.00. All sales were by live weight.

Similarly, Choice steers and heifers sold steady to $1 lower at the fat auction in Tama, IA. There were 150 Choice 2-4 steers weighing an average of 1,473 lbs., bringing an average of $114.19/cwt., which was steady with the prior week’s negotiated trade.

Cattle futures closed mainly higher Wednesday, supported by lower Corn futures and oversold conditions.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 59¢ higher, except for an average of 5¢ lower in the front two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.28 higher, from 47¢ higher in spot Mar to $1.97 higher toward the back.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.65 lower Wednesday afternoon at $233.03/cwt. Select was $1.93 lower at $224.24.

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 10¢ lower through May ‘22 and then mostly fractionally mixed.

Soybean futures closed 3¢ to 7¢ lower through Mar ‘22, and then mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ lower.

March 3rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 3, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live prices last week were at $114/cwt. and dressed trade was at $182.

Cattle futures closed mixed Tuesday, with continued pressure from Corn futures and uncertainty about the week’s cash direction.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 33¢ higher, except for 25¢ lower in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed mixed, from an average of 42¢ lower to an average of 18¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $4.35 lower Tuesday afternoon at $234.68/cwt. Select was $1.47 lower at $226.17.

Corn futures closed mostly 4¢ to 7¢ higher; 13¢ higher in spot Mar.

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 11¢ higher through Jan ‘22, and then mostly 3¢ higher.

March 2nd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 2, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live prices last week were at $114/cwt. and dressed trade was at $182.

The weekly five-area direct average fed steer price last week was $114.07/cwt., which was even with the previous week but 78¢ less than the previous year. The average five-area dressed steer price was $181.63, which was $1.06 more than the previous week but $3.15 less than the previous year.

Cattle futures extended losses Monday, with pressure including last week’s steady cash prices, the outlook for steady money this week and expectations for declining wholesale beef values.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 47¢ lower, except for unchanged to an average of 8¢ higher in three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 70¢ lower (10¢ lower toward the back to $1.47 lower in spot Mar), except for 50¢ higher in the back contract.

Boxed beef cutout value: Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.50 lower Monday afternoon at $239.03/cwt. Select was $2.09 lower at $227.64.

Grain Futures softened Monday, pressured by the stronger U.S. Dollar and recently weaker export sales.

Corn futures closed 8¢ to 9¢ lower through the front three contracts, 1¢ to 5¢ lower through the next five and then 1¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 9¢ to 13¢ lower through Aug’21, and then mostly 1¢ to 4¢ higher.

March 1st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—March 1, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade continued sluggish on Friday. Live trade last week was steady in Nebraska and the Southern Plains at $114/cwt.; steady to $1 lower at $114 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was steady to $2 higher at $182.

Sluggish cattle trade, near-term heavy fed cattle supplies and month-end position squaring all helped pressure Cattle futures Friday.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.50 lower, from 95¢ lower toward the back to $3.90 lower in expiring Feb.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.27 lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 14¢ higher Friday afternoon at $240.53/cwt. Select was 94¢ higher at $229.73.

Estimated total cattle slaughter last week of 666,000 head was 114,000 head more than the previous week and 38,000 more than the prior year. Year-to-date estimated cattle slaughter of 5.17 million head is 227,000 head fewer than the same time last year. Beef production of 4.37 billion lbs. is 87.9 million lbs. less (-1.97%) year over year.

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 4¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 7¢ to 9¢ lower.

February 27th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 26, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were a few live trades at $114/cwt., and a few in the beef at $182, but too few to trend.

There were also a few dressed trades in the western Corn Belt at $182, but too few to trend.

Last week, live sales were at $114 in the Southern Plains and Nebraska; $114-$115 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $180-$182.

Cattle feeders offered 790 head (6 lots) in Central Stockyards’ special Fed Cattle Exchange auction Thursday, all from the Southern Plains. None sold. Reserve prices were $115-$116 and bids were $114.25 to $114.50.

Cattle futures closed mixed Thursday. Weaker Corn futures, tied to lower export sales and profit taking, helped Feeder Cattle.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 35¢ higher.

Sharply lower outside markets, the continued lack of cash direction and weaker export sales helped to mostly pressure Live Cattle.

Net U.S. beef export sales of 8,500 metric tons for 2021 were 63% less than the previous week and 66% less than the prior four-week average, according to the U.S. Export Sales report for the week ending Feb. 18. Increases were primarily for South Korea, Japan, Mexico, Canada, and Taiwan.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 33¢ lower, except for an average of 17¢ higher in three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 36¢ lower Thursday afternoon at $240.39/cwt. Select was $1.00 lower at $228.79.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Feb. 13 was 919 lbs., the same as a week earlier, but 14 lbs. heavier than the previous year, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 850 lbs. was 2 lbs. heavier than the prior week and 17 lbs. heavier than the previous year. Fed cattle slaughter of 468,241 head was 40,812 head less than the previous week; 20,542 head less than the prior year.

Corn futures closed 3¢ to 7¢ lower through Sep ‘21, and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 5¢ to 18¢ lower through Jan ‘22, and then mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ higher.

February 25th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 25, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle tradewas limited on light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were a few live trades in the Southern Plains steady with last week at $114/cwt., but too few to trend.

Cattle feeders offered 1,145 head (9 lots) in Central Stockyards’ (CS) Fed Cattle Exchange auction Wednesday, all from the Southern Plains. Of those, 409 head sold (250 heifers and 159 steers) for a weighted average price of $114.25/cwt. CS will host a special sale Thursday.

On the other hand, slaughter steers sold steady to $3 lower, with instances of $4 lower at Sioux Falls Regional in South Dakota. There were 534 head of Choice 3-4 steers weighing an average of 1,654 lbs., bringing an average of $112.06, which was $2-$3 lower than cash trade in the region last week.

Cattle futures closed higher Wednesday, helped along by sharply higher outside markets, broad commodity support and recent strength in Lean Hog futures.

 Live Cattle futures closed an average of 91¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.23 higher, from 67¢ higher at the back to $2.15 higher toward the front.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 46¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $240.75/cwt. Select was 74¢lower at $229.79. 

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 7¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 14¢ to 18¢ higher through Jan ‘22, and then mostly 5¢ to 10¢ higher.

February 24th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 24, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in Kansas through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was limited on light demand, with too few transactions to trend.

Cattle futures softened Tuesday, with spot Live Cattle soon to expire, the lack of cash direction and bearish outside markets early in the session.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 85¢ lower, from 10¢ to $1.85 lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.01 lower, from 67¢ to $1.35 lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 31¢ higher Tuesday afternoon at $240.29/cwt. Select was 55¢ higher at $230.53.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 2¢ higher through Jly ‘21, and then mostly fractionally mixed.

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 22¢ higher through Sep ‘22, and then mostly 8¢ higher.

February 23rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 23, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live sales last week were at $114/cwt. in the Southern Plains and Nebraska; at $114-$115 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $180-$181 in Nebraska and at $180-$182 in the western Corn Belt.

Last week’s five-area direct average steer price was 39¢ higher on a live basis at $113.99/cwt. The average five-area dressed steer price was 47¢ higher at $180.57.

Despite rising Corn futures prices and higher feedlot placements than expected (Friday’s Cattle on Feed report), Feeder Cattle futures shook off early pressure to mostly extend gains. Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, though, amid plentiful fed cattle supplies and short-term uncertainty.

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from an average of 28¢ lower across the front half of the board to an average of 16¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 27¢ higher, except for an average of 32¢ lower in the back two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 75¢ higher Monday afternoon at $239.98/cwt. Select was $2.08 higher at $229.98.

Grain Futures rebounded with last week’s USDA forecast during the Agricultural Outlook Forum.

Corn futures closed mostly 6¢ to 9¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 5¢ to 15¢ higher.

February 22nd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 22, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade last week ended up steady in the Southern Plains at $114/cwt., according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live trades were steady to $1 higher in Nebraska at $114; dressed trade steady to $1 higher at $180-$181. In the western Corn Belt, prices were steady to $2 higher on a live basis at $114-$115 and steady to $2 higher in the beef at $180-$182.

Through Thursday, the five-area direct average steer price was $114.11/cwt. on a live basis, which was 33¢ more than the previous week but $5.66 lower than the same week last year. The average five-area dressed steer price was 64¢ higher week to week at $180.71, which was $9.39 less year over year.

Cattle futures closed higher Friday with steady cash prices, lower Corn futures, the week’s strong wholesale beef values and expectations for packers to pick up production following storm disruptions.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 71¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 90¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 38¢ higher Friday afternoon at $239.23/cwt. Select was 43¢ higher at $227.90.

Estimated cattle slaughter for the week of 552,000 head was 56,000 head fewer than the previous week and 74,000 head fewer than the same week last year. Estimated year-to-date cattle slaughter of 4.50 million head is 263,000 head fewer (-5.52%) than last year. Estimated year-to-date beef production of 3.81 billion lbs. is 124.8 million lbs. less (-3.17%) than the same time last year.

Corn futures closed 6¢ to 7¢ lower through the front three contracts, mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ higher through Jly ’23 and then mostly 3¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 3¢ to 9¢ higher.

February 20th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 19, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live sales were steady with the prior week at $114/cwt. in the Southern Plains. There were a few live sales at $114 in Nebraska and a few in the western Corn Belt at $115, but too few to trend.

Prices last week were $113-$114 in Nebraska on a live basis and at $112-$115 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $180.

Cattle feeders offered 1,518 head of Southern Plains steers and heifers in Central Stockyards’ special Fed Cattle Exchange auction on Thursday. Of those, 737 head sold (5 lots), via live weight and Bid-the-Grid for $114/cwt. The exception was 41 head bringing $113.75.

Cattle futures closed mixed but mostly lower Thursday, pressured again by supply chain disruptions and uncertainty about post-storm impacts. Positioning ahead of Friday’s monthly Cattle on Feed report also could have been in play.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 70¢ lower (17¢ to $1.22 lower), except for an average of 32¢ higher in the back three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 48¢ lower, except from unchanged to an average of 8¢ higher in three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.34 higher Thursday afternoon at $238.85/cwt. Select was $1.83 higher at $227.47.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Feb. 6 was 919 lbs., which was 1 lb. lighter than the previous week but 16 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 848 lbs. was 5 lbs. lighter week to week but 14 lbs. heavier year over year. Total fed cattle slaughter for the week of 509,053 head was 16,884 head more than the same week last year.

Corn futures closed mixed, mostly from 1¢ lower to 1¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 6¢ to 8¢ lower through the front four contracts, then 2¢ lower to mostly 2¢ to 4¢ higher.

February 18th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 18, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There was some trade in the Texas Panhandle on Tuesday at $114/cwt., which was steady with last week.

Impacts from the severe weather, including reports of reduced slaughter at some packing plants in the Southern Plains, due to rolling power outages, might help explain what appears to be a tough road to maintaining steady fed cattle prices this week. Reduced production also helps account for the atypical rise in wholesale beef values.

Cattle feeders offered 1,444 head (9 lots) in Central Stockyards’ (CS) weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction, all from Kansas and Texas. None sold. The reserve price for most was $114.50/cwt. CS will host another sale Thursday.

Choice steers and heifers sold 75¢ to $1.00/cwt. higher amid a light offering at the fat auction in Tama, IA. The deepest test was 198 head of Choice 2-4 heifers weighing an average of 1,362 lbs., bringing an average of $114.92. That was at the upper end of last week’s country trade in the region.

At Sioux Falls Regional, though, slaughter steers sold steady, while heifers traded $2-$3 lower. There were 171 Choice 2-3 steers weighing an average of 1,457 lbs. and bringing an average of $113.37.

Cattle futures closed lower Wednesday, pressured by supply chain disruptions, as well as uncertainty about post-storm impacts.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 58¢ lower, from 2¢ lower toward the back to $1.65 lower toward the front.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.26 lower, from 85¢ lower to $2.35 lower in spot Mar.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.74 higher Wednesday afternoon at $237.51/cwt. Select was $3.61 higher at $225.64.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ higher through Sep ‘22, and then mostly unchanged to fractionally higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ lower, except for 3¢ higher in near Nov and Jan.

February 17th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 17, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Trade last week was steady in the Southern Plains at $114/cwt. on a live basis, $1-$2 higher in Nebraska at $113-$114 and steady to $1 higher in the western Corn Belt at $112-$115. Dressed trade was steady to $2 higher at $180.

Futures markets closed mixed but mainly higher Tuesday, with Feeder Cattle fading pressure from surging grain futures and Live Cattle helped by higher wholesale beef values and recently increasing open interest.

Live Cattle futures closed mixed, from an average of 41¢ lower in four contracts (5¢ lower at the back to $1.05 lower in spot Feb) to an average of 31¢ higher.  

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 78¢ higher, except for an average of 10¢ lower in the front three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.33 higher Tuesday afternoon at $234.77/cwt. Select was 62¢ higher at $222.03.

Grain futures surged, led by wheat and concerns about winter kill from the severe weather.

Corn futures closed 11¢ to 13¢ higher through Sep ‘21, 7¢ to 9¢ higher through the next four contracts and then mostly 3¢ to 4¢ higher. 

Soybean futures closed 11¢ to 17¢ higher. 

February 16th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 16, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Trade last week was steady in the Southern Plains at $114/cwt. on a live basis, $1-$2 higher in Nebraska at $113-$114 and steady to $1 higher in the western Corn Belt at $112-$115. Dressed trade was steady to $2 higher at $180.

The five-area direct average steer price last week was about even with the prior week at $113.83/cwt. on a live basis and at $180.10 in the beef. Confirmed trade volume was 19,328 head fewer at 62,079.

Futures markets were closed Monday in observance of President’s Day. Week to week on Friday, Live Cattle futures closed an average of 79¢ higher (45¢ to $1.40 higher). Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.29 higher, from 17¢ higher at the back to $2.57 higher at the front.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 7¢ higher Monday afternoon at $232.44/cwt. Select was 48¢ higher at $221.41.

February 15th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 15, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade ranged from slow to limited trade on light demand up north, to mostly inactive in the Southern Plains, through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

For the week:

Live prices in the Southern Plains were steady at $114/cwt.

Live prices in Nebraska were $1-$2 higher at $113-$114. Dressed trade was steady to $2 higher at $180.

Live prices in the western Corn Belt were steady to $3 higher at $114-$115. Dressed trade was steady to $2 higher at $180.

The five-area direct average steer price through Thursday was $113.78/cwt. on a live basis, which was 50¢ lower than the previous week and $5.10 less than the prior year. The average steer price in the beef of $180.07 was 75¢ less than the prior week and $10.19 less than the previous year.

Estimated total cattle slaughter last week was 611,000 head, which was 42,000 head fewer than the previous week. Estimated year-to-date cattle slaughter of 3.95 million head is 185,000 head fewer (-4.47%) than the same period last year. Estimated year-to-date beef production of 3.35 billion lbs. is 68.2 million lbs. less (-2.0%) than a year earlier.

Cattle futures closed higher Friday with support from consolidating grain futures prices, as well as the outlook for higher cash prices next week, given the frigid weather and what appeared to be sluggish fed cattle trade for the week.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 98¢ higher, from 22¢ lower toward the back to $2.05 higher toward the front.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 98¢ higher (60¢ to $1.70 higher).

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 59¢ lower Friday afternoon at $232.37/cwt. Select was 64¢ higher at $220.93.

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 4¢ lower through Jly ‘22, and then mostly fractionally lower to 1¢ lower. 

Soybean futures closed 4¢ to 5¢ higher through Aug ‘21, and then mostly fractionally higher to 2¢ higher.

February 13th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 12. 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were a few live trades in Nebraska, but too few to trend.

For the week so far, live trade in the Southern Plains is steady at $114/cwt. Dressed trade is steady to $2 higher at $180 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Live trade in the latter two regions last week was at $112-$114.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed on Thursday.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 52¢ higher, except for 80¢ lower in spot Feb. 

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 20¢ lower, except for unchanged to an average of 9¢ higher in three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 6¢ lower through Thursday afternoon at $232.96/cwt. Select was 67¢ lower at $220.29.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Jan. 30 was 920 lbs., which was 6 lbs. lighter than the previous week but 23 lbs. heavier than the same week a year earlier, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 853 lbs. was 2 lbs. heavier than the prior week and 20 lbs. heavier than the previous year.

Grain futures recovered some gains from the previous session’s steep decline as markets continue carving out a trading range.

Corn futures closed 6¢ to 7¢ higher through the front three contracts, and then 1¢ to 4¢ higher. 

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 15¢ higher through Nov ‘21, and then mostly 3¢ to 5¢ higher.

February 11th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 11, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light demand in Kansas through Wednesday afternoon at $114/cwt. on a live basis, which was steady with last week.

Trade was also slow on light demand in the western Corn Belt with early dressed sales steady to $2 higher at $180. Live prices there last week were at $112-$114.

Elsewhere, trade was limited on light demand, with too few transactions to trend, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week: live prices in the Texas Panhandle and Nebraska were at mostly $114; dressed trade in Nebraska was at $178-$180.

Cattle feeders offered 1,251 head (10 lots) in Central Stockyards’ weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction. Of those, 518 head (four lots) from the Southern Plains sold for a weighted average price of $114/cwt., via live weight and Bid-the-Grid. That was steady with the previous week’s country trade in the region.

Slaughter steers and heifers sold $3-$5 higher at Sioux Falls Regional in South Dakota. There were 147 head of Choice 3-4 steers weighing an average of 1,548 lbs., bringing an average of $113.79. That was at the upper end of last week’s country price for the region.

Cattle futures closed mixed on Wednesday. Sharply lower Corn futures helped boost Feeder Cattle, while softer Choice wholesale beef values and demand uncertainty pressured Live Cattle.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 87¢ lower, from 55¢ lower to $1.32 lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 39¢ higher, from 10¢ to 85¢ higher

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.27 lower Wednesday afternoon at $233.02/cwt. Select was 23¢ higher at $220.96.

Grain futures fell hard on Wednesday, with likely profit taking following the WASDE report leaving South American production unchanged, whereas the trade expected a reduction.

Corn futures closed 11¢ to 21¢ lower through the front four contracts, 5¢ to 8¢ lower through the next five contracts and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 24¢ to 47¢ lower through Jan ‘22, 12¢ to 18¢ lower through the next five contracts and then mostly 8¢ lower.

February 10th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 10, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on light demand in the Southern Plains through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill.

Pressure in Corn futures helped boost Cattle futures Tuesday, especially Feeder Cattle.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 32¢ higher (15¢ to 87¢ higher) except for an average of 25¢ lower in two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.32 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.91 lower Tuesday afternoon at $234.29/cwt. Select was 12¢ higher at $220.73.

Corn futures closed 7¢ to 8¢ lower through the front three contracts and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ lower. Estimated U.S. and world ending stocks were more than the average of expectations.

Soybean futures closed mostly 10¢ to 14¢ higher through Jan ‘22 and then mostly 8¢ to 9¢ higher.

February 9th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 9, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill.

Regionally, prices last week were mainly $1-$2 higher on a live basis at $114/cwt. in the Southern Plains, mostly $114 in Nebraska and at $112-$114 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was steady to $2 higher at $178-$180.

The five-area direct steer price was $113.64/cwt. last week on a live basis, which was $1.00 more than the previous week. The average steer price in the beef of $179.26 was $1.70 higher.

Live Cattle futures mostly edged higher Monday, helped along by the higher cash prices and prospects of higher money this week as the coldest temperatures of the year erode cattle performance.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 18¢ higher, except for 15¢ lower and 10¢ lower at either end of the board.

Feeder Cattle futures closed lower beneath the weight of grain futures, which likely got a boost from positioning ahead of Tuesday’s World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.29 lower, from 72¢ lower toward the front to $2.15 lower at the back.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.62 higher Monday afternoon at $236.20/cwt. Select was 18¢ lower at $220.61.

Corn futures closed 11¢ to 15¢ higher through the front three contracts and then mostly 1¢ to 6¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 14¢ to 21¢ higher.

February 8th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 8, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade and prices were mostly $1 higher in the Southern Plains at $114/cwt. on a live basis, with moderate trade and demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

In Nebraska, trade was slow to moderate with moderate demand through Friday afternoon. Live prices were steady to $1 higher at $112-$114, but mostly $114. Dressed trade there on Thursday was steady to $2 higher at $178-$180.

Live prices in the western Corn Belt on Thursday were at $112-$114, which was generally $1.50-$2.00 higher. Dressed prices were mainly steady to $2 higher at $178-$180.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Jan. 23 was 926 lbs., according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 1 lb. heavier than the previous week and 25 lbs. heavier than the prior year. The average dressed heifer weight of 851 lbs. was 1 lb. heavier than the previous week and 19 lbs. heavier than the prior year.

Total estimated cattle slaughter last week was 653,000 head, the same as the previous week; 22,000 head more than the same week last year. Year-to-date estimated cattle slaughter of 3.34 million head is 178,000 fewer (-5.0%) than the same time last year.

Cattle futures edged lower Friday, with recently softer wholesale beef values, some likely week-end profit taking, and in the face of higher cash prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 21¢ lower, except for an average of 15¢ higher in the front two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 48¢ lower, from 25¢ lower at the back to $1.22 lower in spot Mar.

Corn futures closed fractionally mixed to 1¢ lower through Jly ’22 and then 3¢ to 9¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 3¢ higher, except for 1¢ to 5¢ lower in the front three contracts.

February 6th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 5, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow with light to moderate demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Although there were too few to trend, early dressed sales in Nebraska were at $180/cwt., which was $2 more than last week. Live sales there last week were at $112-$113.

In the western Corn Belt, early dressed sales were steady to $2 higher than last week at $178-$180, but too few to trend. Early live sales were 50¢ to $3 higher at $113, but too few to trend.

Trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the Southern Plains. Live prices there last week were at $113.

Cattle futures closed higher Thursday, extending gains from the previous session, with moderating grain futures prices and the outlook for higher cash fed cattle prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 50¢ higher, from 12¢ higher to $1.30 higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 63¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.03 lower Thursday afternoon at $234.25/cwt. Select was $2.95 lower at $220.44.

Corn futures closed fractionally mixed to 2¢ lower through Sep ’21 and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 1¢ to 4¢ higher through Sep ‘21, and then mostly 7¢ to 8¢ higher.

February 4th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 4, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in Kansas and Nebraska through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on very light demand.

Cattle feeders offered 1,362 head (eight lots) in Central Stockyard’s weekly Fed Cattle Exchange Auction, all from the Southern Plains. Of those, 699 head sold (four lots of heifers) for a weighted average price of $113.71/cwt., via live weight and Bid-the-Grid. That was a bit higher than country trade in the region last week.

At Sioux Falls Regional fat auction, though, slaughter steers and heifers sold steady to $2 lower. There were 436 head of Choice 3-4 steers weighing an average of 1,554 lbs. bringing an average of $110.66/cwt. That was at the low end of the last week’s country price.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, but mostly edged higher after the front months on Wednesday. Pressure included resurgent grain futures prices and softer wholesale beef values.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 38¢ higher, except for an average of 28¢ lower in the front two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 29¢ higher, except for an average of 36¢ lower in the front three contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.48 lower Wednesday afternoon at $235.28/cwt. Select was $1.65 lower at $223.39.

Corn futures closed 4¢ to 9¢ higher through May ‘22 and then mostly unchanged to fractionally lower.

Soybean futures closed 9¢ to 16¢ higher through Sep ‘21, and then mostly 1¢ to 4¢ higher.

February 3rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 3, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on very light demand.

Last week, cash fed cattle prices ended up $2-$3 higher in the Southern Plains at $113/cwt., $3 higher in the Northern Plains at $113 and $2.50-$5.00 higher in the western Corn Belt at $110.00-$112.50. Dressed trade was $5-$8 higher at $178.

Cattle futures gained again on Tuesday, supported by softer Corn futures, last week’s stronger cash prices and higher Lean Hog futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 64¢ higher (40¢ higher at the back to $1.10 higher in spot Feb).

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.21 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.08 higher Tuesday afternoon at $236.76/cwt. Select was 55¢ lower at $225.04.

Corn futures closed 5¢ to 6¢ lower through the front three contracts and then mostly fractionally higher.

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 11¢ lower through the front four contracts, and then mostly 2¢ lower to fractionally higher.

February 2nd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 2, 2021

The average five-area direct fed steer price was $3.21 higher on a live basis last week at $112.44/cwt. The average steer price in the beef was $4.98 higher at $177.56.

Monday’s negotiated cash fed cattle trade summary was unavailable from AMS at press time.

Through Friday afternoon, prices were $3-$4 higher on a live basis in the Northern Plains at mostly $113/cwt. Dressed sales in Nebraska were $5 higher at $178.

On Friday, the Texas Cattle Feeders Association reported its members trading cattle at just over $2 more week to week: $112.80 for steers and $112.91 for heifers.

Softer Corn futures early on Monday, along with last week’s stronger cash prices, helped Cattle futures mostly gain.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 76¢ higher, except for an average of 16¢ lower in the front two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.08 higher (20¢ higher in spot Mar to $2.55 higher toward the back).

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 9¢ to 12¢ higher through Sep ‘22, except for 3¢ to 4¢ lower in the front three contracts.

February 1st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Feb. 1, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices were $3-$4 higher on a live basis in the Northern Plains on Friday at mostly $113/cwt., according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. That was with slow trade and light demand. Dressed sales in Nebraska were $5 higher at $178.

There were a few live sales in the Southern Plains at $113 and a few dressed trades in the western Corn Belt at $178, but too few to trend.

On Thursday, live sales in the western Corn Belt were $2-$7 higher at $112. Dressed trade the previous week was at $170-$173.

The prior week, live sales were at $110-$111 in the Texas Panhandle and at $110 in Kansas. On Friday, the Texas Cattle Feeders Association reported its members trading cattle at just over $2 more week to week: $112.80 for steers and $112.91 for heifers.

Despite higher cash cattle prices and increasing wholesale beef values, Cattle futures closed lower Friday, as grain futures continued to climb. Month-end position squaring likely played a role, too.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.23 lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.96 lower.

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 6¢ higher mixed, except for 9¢ to 12¢ higher in the front three contracts.

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 16¢ higher through Sep ‘22, and then 7¢ to 9¢ higher.

January 31st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 29, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Kansas through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were a few live trades at $112/cwt., which was $2 higher than last week.

Trade was mostly inactive on light demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt with too few transactions to trend. It was at a standstill in the Texas Panhandle and Colorado.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Jan. 16 was 925 lbs., which was 2 lbs. heavier than the previous week and 18 lbs. heavier than the same week last year, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 850 lbs. was 1 lb. lighter than the prior week but 16 lbs. heavier than the previous year.

Cattle futures edged lower Thursday amid light trade. 

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 38¢ lower, except for 7¢ higher in near Apr.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 41¢ lower, other than 7¢ and 10¢ higher at either end of the board.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.33 higher Thursday afternoon at $231.99/cwt. Select was $1.89 higher at $220.88.

Corn futures closed fractionally mixed to 1¢ higher through the front three contracts, 3¢ lower through Jly ‘22, and then mostly fractionally lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 14¢ to 21¢ lower.

January 28th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 28, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in Kansas and the Northern Plains through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on light demand, with too few transactions to trend. With that said, early indications point toward higher prices.

Cattle feeders offered 1,570 head (11 lots) in Central Stockyard’s weekly Fed Cattle Exchange Auction, all from the Southern Plains. Of those, 1,128 head (seven lots) sold for a weighted average price of $112.97/cwt. ($112.95 for steers and $113.00 for heifers). The marketing method included both live weight and Bid-the-Grid™. Country trade in the region last week was at $110-$111.

Also, slaughter steers and heifers traded $3-$4 higher in the fat auction at Sioux Falls Regional, where 128 head of Choice 3-4 steers brought an average price of $110.06. That’s at the top end of the $105-$110 paid in country trade last week.

Cattle futures closed lower Wednesday with Live Cattle pressured by the lack of cash direction and lower outside markets, while Feeder Cattle continued to adjust to the rebound in Corn futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 54¢ lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 92¢ lower, from 2¢ lower in the spot contract to $1.67 lower at the back.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 66¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $229.66/cwt. Select was $1.66 higher at $218.99.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 2¢ lower, except for fractionally higher to 1¢ higher in the front three contracts.

Soybean futures closed 2¢ to 4¢ higher through Sep ‘21 and then mostly 3¢ to 5¢ lower.

January 27th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 27, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Northern Plains and the Southern Plains through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Trade in the western Corn Belt was inactive on very light demand.

Heavy snow in parts of Nebraska and Kansas could help push trade to later in the week

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 44¢ higher Tuesday, supported by rising wholesale beef values.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.33 higher Tuesday afternoon at $229.06/cwt. Select was $1.12 higher at $217.33.

Feeder Cattle futures, however, closed an average of $1.80 lower, pressured by another day of sharply higher grain futures.

Corn futures closed 11¢ to 20¢ higher through Sep ‘21, 2¢ to 4¢ higher through Jly ’22 and then mostly 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 17¢ to 26¢ higher through Jan ‘22 and then 11¢ to 16¢ higher.

January 26th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 26, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week, live sales were mostly steady to $1 on either side of steady at $110-$111/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $109-$110 in the Northern Plains and at $105-$110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was steady to $3 lower at $170-$173.

The average five-area direct fed steer price last week was $109.23/cwt. on a live basis, which was 29¢ less than the prior week. The average steer price in the beef of $172.58 was 48¢ less.

Cattle futures shrugged off Friday’s monthly Cattle on Feed report and resurgent grain futures on Monday. They were pressured at the outset, but closed mostly higher by the end of the day, retaining strong gains from the previous session.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 37¢ higher (2¢ to $1.07 higher), except for 20¢ lower in the spot contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.11 higher (12¢ to $1.87 higher), except for 70¢ and 30¢ lower in the front two contracts.

Choice boxed beef value was $3.91 higher at $226.73/cwt. Select was $2.87 higher at $216.21.

Grain futures bounced back Monday from the previous session’s selloff as markets carve out a new trading range.

Corn futures closed 11¢ higher through the front three contracts and then mostly 2¢ to 4¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 21¢ to 31¢ higher through Sep ‘22 and then mostly 14¢ to 19¢ higher.

January 25th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 25, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was inactive on very light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live sales for the week were mostly steady to $1 on either side of steady at $110-$111/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $109-$110 in the Northern Plains and $108-$110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was steady to $3 lower at $170-$173.

Through Thursday, the five-area direct average steer price was $109.23/cwt. on a live basis, which was 29¢ less than the previous week and $15.05 less than the same time last year. The average steer price in the beef was $172.59, which was 47¢ less than the previous week and $26.27 less year over year.

Sharply lower grain futures Friday helped fuel strong gains in Cattle futures. Higher wholesale beef prices added support, as did loftier Lean Hog futures, tied in part to reports of new African Swine Fever cases in China.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $2.02 higher through the front four contracts, and then an average of 55¢ higher, except for 35¢ lower in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.81 higher, from $1.95 to $5.00 higher.

Choice boxed beef value was $1.62 higher Friday afternoon at $222.82/cwt. Select was $3.06 higher at $213.34.

Estimated total cattle slaughter for the week of 657,000 head was 6,000 more than the previous week and 13,000 head more than the same week last year. Estimated beef production for the week of 550.2 million lbs. was 5.4 million lbs. more than the previous week and 19.3 million lbs. more than the previous year.

Grain futures tumbled hard Friday, pressured by factors including profit taking and rains in South America.

Corn futures closed 17¢ to 23¢ lower through Jly ‘22 and then mostly 6¢ to 7¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 44¢ to 58¢ lower through Aug ‘22 and then 31¢ to 38¢ lower.

January 23rd, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 22, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow to moderate on light demand in Nebraska through Thursday afternoon. Dressed trade was unevenly steady with the previous week at $173/cwt. There were a few live sales at $109, but too few to trend; $109-$110 last week.

Trade was limited on light demand in Kansas with a few live trades at $110, which was steady with the previous day and week.

Elsewhere, trade was mostly inactive on light demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live trade in the Texas Panhandle on Wednesday was at $110, steady to $1 lower than last week. Trade in Colorado on Wednesday was steady to $1 higher at $109-$110.

Last week, live sales in the western Corn Belt were at $108-$109; dressed trade at $173.

Although steady to weak cash prices are a disappointment this week, Live Cattle futures stabilized and gained Thursday, likely helped along by rising wholesale beef values. Feeder Cattle also continued to extend gains. Positioning ahead of Friday’s Cattle on Feed report likely played a role, too.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 46¢ higher, from 2¢ higher at the back to $1.07 higher toward the front.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 72¢ higher, from 2¢ to $1.62 higher, except for unchanged in the back contract.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.29 higher Thursday afternoon at $221.20/cwt. Select was $3.00 higher at $210.28.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Jan. 9 was 923 lbs., which was 3 lbs. heavier than the prior week and 19 lbs. heavier than the prior year, according to the USDA Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 851 lbs. was the same as a week earlier but 17 lbs. heavier than the same week a year earlier. Total cattle slaughter for the week of 652,330 head was 9,420 head more year over year. Beef production for the week of 549.1 million lbs. was 19.6 million lbs. more than the previous year.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 3¢ higher through the front three contracts and then mostly unchanged to fractionally mixed.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 3¢ lower, except for fractionally higher to 2¢ higher in the front three contracts.

January 21st, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 21, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow on light to moderate demand in Kansas through Wednesday afternoon. Live trades were unevenly steady with last week at $110/cwt. Trade was limited on light demand in the Texas Panhandle, where there were a few live sales at $110, but too few to trend. Elsewhere, trade was inactive with very light demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.42 higher Wednesday afternoon at $218.91/cwt. Select was 84¢ higher at $207.28.

Live Cattle futures edged lower again Wednesday as the week’s cash outlook appears either side of steady, despite continued strength in wholesale beef prices. They closed an average of 39¢ lower, except for from 2¢ higher in spot Feb.

Feeder Cattle futures extended gains Wednesday, helped along by another day of retreat in grain futures. They closed an average of 79¢ higher, from 40¢ to $1.12 higher.

Corn futures closed 4¢ to 6¢ lower through Jly ‘22 and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 16¢ to 21¢ lower.

January 20th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 20, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in Kansas and the Northern Plains through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was very limited with very light demand; too few transactions to trend.

Feeder Cattle futures extended gains Tuesday, helped along by softer Corn and Soybean futures. Live Cattle mostly edged lower.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 26¢ lower, except for from 45¢ to $1.15 higher in the front three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.44 higher, except for 17¢ lower in spot Jan. That’s mainly an average of $3.46 higher in the last two trading sessions.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.45 higher through Tuesday afternoon at $217.49/cwt. Select was 60¢ higher at $206.44.

Corn futures closed 4¢ to 7¢ lower through the front six contracts, and then mostly 2¢ to 4¢ higher toward the back.

Soybean futures closed 23¢ to 31¢ lower through the front four contracts, mostly 7¢ to 8¢ lower through the next five contracts and then mostly 1¢ lower.

January 19th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 19, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in all major cattle feeding regions through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices were generally $1-$3 lower last week at $108-$111/cwt. Dressed prices were $1-$4 lower at $172-$174.

The average five-area direct fed steer price last week was $109.52/cwt. on a live basis, which was $1.75 less than the previous week and $14.51 less than the same week last year. The average dressed steer price of $173.06 was $2.73 less than the prior week and $25.98 less than the prior year.

Futures and equity markets were closed Monday in observance of Martin Luther King Day.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.12 higher Monday afternoon at $215.04/cwt. Select was $2.76 higher at $205.84.

January 18th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 18, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains and Colorado through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was mostly inactive on very light demand.

Live prices were generally $1-$3 lower last week at $108-$111/cwt. Dressed prices were $1-$4 lower at $172-$174.

Through Thursday, the average five-area direct fed steer price was $109.52/cwt. on a live basis, which was $1.96 less than the previous week and $14.48 less than the same week a year earlier. The average steer price in the beef was $173.06, which was $2.96 less than the previous week and $26.01 less than a year earlier.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 45¢ lower Friday afternoon at $212.92/cwt. Select was $2.01 higher at $203.08. 

Total estimated cattle slaughter for the week of 651,000 head was the same as a week earlier and 18,000 head more than the same week a year earlier. Estimated beef production for the week of 544.8 million lbs. was 22.3 million lbs. more than the previous year.

The average dressed steer weight the week of Jan. 2 of 920 lbs. was 7 lbs. heavier than the previous week and 8 lbs. heavier than the same week a year earlier, according to the USDA Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 851 lbs. was 12 lbs. heavier than the previous week and 19 lbs. heavier than the prior year.

Cattle futures closed higher Friday. Bottom feeding might be one of the drivers, as was stronger wholesale beef values, rising open interest and a pause to increasing Corn futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 93¢ higher, from 45¢ to $1.32 higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.02 higher.

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 3¢ lower through the front three contracts, and then mostly 1¢ to 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 12¢ to 13¢ lower through the front three contracts, and then mostly 1¢ to 5¢ higher.

January 16th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 15, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in Colorado through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was limited on light demand with too few transactions to trend.

For the week so far:

Texas Panhandle: $110-$111/cwt.

Kansas: $109-$110

Nebraska: $109-$110 on a live basis; $172 dressed.

Colorado: $109

Western Corn Belt: $108-$109 on a live basis; $173-$174 dressed.

Cattle futures were mixed Thursday, with Feeder Cattle losing ground beneath the weight of another surge higher in grain prices, while more positive supply fundamentals in the second quarter helped bolster deferred Live Cattle.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 68¢ higher, except for an average of 19¢ lower in the front three.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 64¢ lower except for 15¢ higher in the back contract.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.37 higher Thursday afternoon at $213.37/cwt. Select was $2.01 higher at $201.07.

Strong exports continue to support corn and soybean prices, according to the latest USDA U.S. Export Sales report for the week ending Jan. 7.

Net U.S. corn export sales of 1.44 million metric tons (mt) for 2020-21 were 92% more than the previous week and 34% more than the prior four-week average.

Net U.S. soybean export sales of 908,000 mt for 2020-21 were up noticeably from the previous week and up 93% from the prior four-week average.

Corn futures closed 9¢ to 10¢ higher through the front three contracts, and then 1¢ to 5¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 20¢ to 25¢ higher through Jan ‘22, and then mostly 10¢ to 16¢ higher.

January 14th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 14, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices for the week, through Wednesday afternoon, were $1-$3 less than the previous week on a live basis and $2-$3 lower in the beef, according to data from the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices were $1 lower than the previous day and $2 less than the previous week in the Texas Panhandle at $110/cwt. Prices in Kansas were $1-$3 lower at $109-$111. Live prices in Nebraska the previous day were at $109-$111, which was steady to $1 lower than the previous week; dressed trade was $2-$3 lower at $173-$174. Live prices were $3 lower in Colorado at $109. Live prices in the western Corn Belt on Tuesday were at $108-$109, which was $1-$2 lower than the previous week; dressed trade was $3 lower at $174-$177.

Feeder Cattle futures mostly edged higher Wednesday, with Feeder Cattle recovering some of the previous session’s steep losses. Higher wholesale beef values also helped Live Cattle to firm after the front months.

Live Cattle futures closed mainly narrowly mixed but mostly higher, from an average of 22¢ lower in the front two contracts to an average of 35¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 61¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.86 higher Wednesday afternoon at $211.00/cwt. Select was 97¢ higher at $199.06.

Corn futures closed 7¢ to 8¢ higher through the front three contracts, and then mostly 3¢ to 4¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 6¢ to 12¢ lower through Sep ‘21, and then mostly 1¢ to 4¢ higher.

January 13th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 13, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service, with too few transactions to trend. Elsewhere, trade was at a standstill.

Feeder Cattle futures closed sharply lower Tuesday, pressured by more friendly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates for corn and soybeans (see below). Firmer wholesale beef values and hopes for a recovering domestic economy later in the year helped Live Cattle close mainly higher. The recent and continued increase in open interest helped, as did strength in Lean Hog futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 89¢ higher, except for 55¢ lower in the front three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.98 lower from 90¢ lower at the back to $2.92 lower toward the front.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.45 higher Tuesday afternoon at $209.14/cwt. Select was $2.35 higher at $198.09.

Grain futures surged higher Tuesday, fueled by the friendly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates.

Corn futures closed 23¢ to 25¢ higher through the front four contracts, 12¢ to 16¢ higher through the next four and then mostly 5¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 41¢ to 47¢ higher through the front four contracts, 19¢ to 33¢ higher through the next four and then mostly 10¢ to 16¢ lower.

January 12th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 12, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill through Monday afternoon, except for the western Corn Belt, where trade was mostly inactive on very light demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices last week were at $112/cwt. in the Southern Plains and Colorado, $110-$111 in Nebraska and $110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $176 in Nebraska and at $174-$177 in the western Corn Belt.

The average five-area direct fed steer price last week was $111.27/cwt. on a live basis, which was 24¢ less than the previous week. The average steer price in the beef was $175.79, which was 12¢ more than the previous week.

Cattle futures closed mostly lower Monday, with most of the declines in Live Cattle. Pressure included the inability to spark cash prices higher last week, as well as uneasiness ahead of the monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates scheduled to be published Tuesday (see below). There was also likely pressure in the nearby contracts from the monthly Goldman roll, as that firm rolls forward underlying futures contracts in its excess return index portfolio, contracts set to expire in the next month.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 49¢ lower, except for 7¢ higher in three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 15¢ lower except for an average of 12¢ higher in the front two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 89¢ higher Monday afternoon at $207.69/cwt. Select was 95¢ lower at $195.74.

Corn futures closed 3¢ to 4¢ lower through the front three contracts and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 2¢ lower through Aug ‘21 and then mostly 12¢ to 14¢ lower.

January 11th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 11, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Texas Panhandle and Colorado through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was limited on light demand with too few transactions to trend.

For the week, despite hopes for gains, prices through Friday afternoon were generally unevenly steady.

Southern Plains: steady at $112/cwt.

Nebraska: steady to $1 lower on a live basis at $110-$111; steady to $1 higher in the beef at $176.

Colorado: Steady to $1 higher on a live basis at $112.

Western Corn Belt: steady to $2 lower on a live basis at $110; steady to $1 higher in the beef at $175-$177.

Through Thursday, the average five-area direct fed steer price was 1¢ higher on a live basis at $111.49/cwt. The average steer price in the beef was 47¢ higher at $176.02.

Cattle futures closed lower Friday. Pressure included demand uncertainty and continued grain market strength.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 17¢ lower, except for 5¢ higher in Oct.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 52¢ lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 99¢ higher Friday afternoon at $206.80/cwt. Select was 10¢ higher at $196.69.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 2¢ higher through the front four contracts and then mostly 1¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 11¢ to 19¢ higher through Sep ‘21 and then mostly 4¢ to 8¢ higher.

January 9th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 8, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Kansas, the Northern Plains and the western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Although too few to trend, there were a few dressed trades in Nebraska at $177/cwt., which was $1-$2 higher than last week, when live prices were $112 in the Southern Plains and $110-$112 up north.

Firmer Cattle futures and higher outside markets are helping foster optimism for higher cash prices.

The five-area weighted average steer price in December was $109.05/cwt., on a live basis (FOB), which was 20¢ higher than the previous month but $10.95 less than the previous year, according to USDA. The average steer price in the beef (delivered) was $170.94, which was 60¢ higher than the previous month but $20.24 less than the prior year.

Cattle futures closed mostly higher Thursday. Support included the likely need for packers to get cattle bought, in order to maintain the brisk processing pace. Feeder Cattle also benefitted from a pause in escalating Corn futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 26¢ higher, except for 2¢ lower and 25¢ lower on either end of the board.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.11 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 54¢ higher Thursday afternoon at $205.81/cwt. Select was 51¢ higher at $196.59.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Dec. 25 was 913 lbs., according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. That was 8 lbs. less than the previous week but 8 lbs. heavier than the same week a year earlier. The average dressed heifer weight of 839 lbs. was 8 lbs. less than the previous week but 2 lbs. heavier than the prior year.

Corn futures closed unchanged to 1¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 3¢ to 6¢ lower through Sep ‘21 and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher.

January 7th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 7, 2021

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Northern Plains through Wednesday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was mostly inactive on very light demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Cattle feeders offered 1,142 head (mostly from the Southern Plains) in Central Stockyards weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction on Wednesday. One lot of Southern Plains heifers (42 head) sold for a weighted average price of $112/cwt., via Bid-The-Grid™, which was steady with last week’s country trade in the region.

Likewise, fed steers and heifers traded mostly steady at Sioux Falls Regional’s fat auction. There were 301 head of Choice 3-4 steers weighing an average of 1,559 lbs., bringing an average price of $110.76. Country trade in the region last week was at $110-$112.

Cattle futures closed mixed Wednesday, with Live Cattle firming, while Feeder Cattle were pressured by higher grain prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 40¢ higher, except for 5¢ lower and 60¢ lower on either end of the board.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 68¢ lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 63¢ lower Wednesday afternoon at $205.27/cwt. Select was 41¢ lower at $196.08.

Corn futures closed mostly 2¢ to 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 11¢ to 14¢ higher.

January 6th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 6, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill.

Prices on a live basis last week were at $112/cwt. in the Southern Plains, at $111-$112 in Colorado and at $110-$112 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $175-$176.

Cattle futures rebounded Tuesday, with Live Cattle gaining back most of what was lost in the previous session, while Feeder Cattle regained about half, on an average basis. That was despite another surge in grain futures prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.62 higher, except for $1.40 lower in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.35 higher, from 75¢ to $2.02 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.97 lower Tuesday afternoon at $205.90/cwt. Select was 4¢ lower at $196.49.

Corn futures closed 8¢ higher through the front three contracts and then mostly 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 26¢ to 33¢ higher through the front six contracts and then mostly 18¢-21¢ higher.

January 5th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 5, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains and Nebraska through Monday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was mostly inactive on very light demand.

Prices on a live basis last week were at $112/cwt. in the Southern Plains, at $111-$112 in Colorado and at $110-$112 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices were at $175-$176.

The five-area average direct fed steer price last week was $2.32 higher than the previous week on a live basis at $111.51/cwt. The average steer price in the beef was $3.87 higher at $175.67.

Cattle futures fell hard Monday, beneath the weight of sharply lower outside markets and the unrelenting rise in feed costs.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.83 lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.72 lower, from $1.15 lower toward the back to $4.20 lower toward the front.

Choice Boxed beef cutout value was 8¢ lower Monday afternoon at $209.87/cwt. Select was 88¢ higher at $196.53.

Corn futures closed mostly fractionally lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 4¢ to 6¢ higher.

January 4th, 2021|

Cattle Current Podcast—Jan. 1-4, 2021

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.

December 31st, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 31, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices edged higher Wednesday amid light trade. Although there were too few transactions to trend in any region, there were some live trades $1 higher in the Southern Plains at $111/cwt., some at steady money in Nebraska at $110 and a few $2-$6 higher in the western Corn Belt at $112. There were also a few dressed sales $4 higher in Nebraska at $176.

Cattle feeders offered 1,015 head (six lots) in the Central Stockyards weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction Wednesday. One lot of heifers—194 head—from the Southern Plains sold for a weighted average price of $111/cwt. on a live basis.

Cattle futures closed mostly lower Wednesday, especially Feeder Cattle, as grain futures continued surging higher.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 19¢ lower, except for 7¢ and 27¢ higher at either end of the board.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.14 lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 23¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $210.53/cwt. Select was $4.38 higher at $199.86.

Corn futures closed 5¢ to 8¢ higher through Sep ‘21 and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 5¢ to 7¢ higher.

December 30th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 30, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon, with too few transactions to trend, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill.

Last week, prices in the Southern Plains were $2 higher on a live basis at $110/cwt., $5 higher in Nebraska at $110 and $1-$5 higher in the western Corn Belt at $106-$110. Dressed trade was $7 higher at $172.

Cattle futures closed lower Tuesday with pressure from surging grain futures and despite the prospect of higher cash prices this week as packers reload and retailers restock.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 63¢ lower, except for an average of 5¢ higher in two contracts toward the back.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 99¢ lower from 52¢ lower at the back to $1.37 lower in spot Jan.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.48 higher Tuesday afternoon at $210.30/cwt. Select was $1.17 lower at $195.48.

Corn futures closed mostly 5¢ to 9¢ higher through Jly ‘22 and then mostly fractionally higher.

Soybean futures closed 35¢ to 40¢ higher through Aug ’21, and then mostly 6¢ to 13¢ higher.

 

December 29th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 29, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill.

Last week, prices in the Southern Plains were $2 higher on a live basis at $110/cwt., $5 higher in Nebraska at $110 and $1-$5 higher in the western Corn Belt at $106-$110. Dressed trade was $7 higher at $172.

The five-area direct weighted average steer price last week was $109.19/cwt. on a live basis, which was $3.07 more than the previous week. The average steer price in the beef was $6.51 more at $171.80, according to USDA’s weekly report.

The five-area direct weighted average fed heifer price was $109.68/cwt. on a live basis, which was $3.25 more week to week. The average dressed heifer price was $6.74 more at $171.91.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 21¢ higher Monday afternoon at $207.82/cwt. Select was $1.28 lower at $196.65.

Estimated total cattle slaughter for the week ending Dec. 26 was 419,000 head, which was 56,000 head fewer (-11.8%) than the same time a year earlier. Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 31.7 million head was 1.1 million head fewer (-3.5%) than in 2019.

Total estimated beef production for the week of 352.5 million lbs. was 40.2 million lbs. less (-10.2%) than the same time last year. Estimated year-to-date beef production of 26.37 billion lbs. was 264.3 million lbs. less (-1%) than a year earlier.

Cattle futures closed mostly higher Monday, but off of session highs, supported by stronger cash prices late last week, higher outside markets and a winter storm aiming for the Corn Belt.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 46¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed from an average of 9¢ lower to an average of 14¢ higher.

Corn futures closed mostly 2¢ to 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 7¢ to 8¢ lower through Aug ’21, and then 1¢ to 4¢ higher.

December 28th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 28, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle was not reported Thursday or Friday. On Wednesday, prices were $2 higher in the Southern Plains at $110/cwt., according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were some early dressed sales in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt at $172; a few live sales in the western Corn Belt at $110. Trade in those regions the previous week was at mostly $105 on a live basis and mostly $165 in the beef.

Choice Boxed beef cutout value was $3.13 lower on Wednesday at $207.54/cwt. Select was $1.66 lower at $197.93.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Dec. 12 was 922 lbs., which was the same as the prior week but 18 lbs. heavier than the same week a year earlier, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight of 848 lbs. was 2 lbs. lighter week to week but 7 lbs. heavier year over year.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed but mostly slightly higher in Thursday’s short session, amid extremely light holiday trade. Heading into the new week, support from stronger cash prices and the outlook for higher wholesale beef values will likely compete with year-end position squaring.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 21¢ higher except for 7¢ lower in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 25¢ higher except for unchanged to 40¢ lower in three contracts.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 4¢ to 5¢ higher through Aug ’21, and then fractionally lower to 1¢ lower.

December 27th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 24-25, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices were $2 higher in the Southern Plains Wednesday at $110/cwt., with moderate trade and demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was slow on light to moderate demand. Although too few to trend, there were some early dressed sales in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt at $172; a few live sales in the western Corn Belt at $110. Trade in those regions last week was at mostly $105 on a live basis and mostly $165 in the beef.

Also on Wednesday, Central Stockyards hosted its weekly Fed Cattle Exchange auction with a new bidding platform. Cattle feeders offered 803 head. Of those, 545 head (four lots) sold for an average of $110/cwt. Cattle sold were all heifers and all from the Southern Plains. Three lots sold via Bid-the-GridTM; the other on a live basis.

Stronger week-to-week prices were also seen at the fat auction in Tama, IA where Choice steers and heifers traded $1.75 to $2.25 higher. There were 136 Choice 2-4 steers bringing an average price of $107.22/cwt.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.13 lower at $207.54/cwt. Wednesday afternoon. Select was $1.66 lower at $197.93.

Net U.S. beef export sales of 6,000 metric tons for the week ending Dec. 17 were 40% less than the previous week, but up noticeably from the prior four-week average, according to USDA’s weekly U.S. Export Sales report. Increases were primarily for Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Canada and Hong Kong.

Cattle futures closed higher Wednesday, supported by stronger cash prices and a surge in Lean Hog futures, likely tied in part to the previous day’s friendly Cold Storage report. As well, the Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report that came out later in the day indicates the inventory of all hogs and pigs as of Dec. 1 was 1% less year over year; 3% lower for the breeding inventory.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 97¢ higher from 65¢ higher toward the back to $1.60 higher in waning spot Dec.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 35¢ higher except for 15¢ lower in Oct.

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ higher through Jly ‘22 and then mostly fractionally higher.

Soybean futures closed 5¢ to 11¢ higher through Aug ’21, and then mostly 3¢ to 7¢ lower.

December 23rd, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 23, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was limited to mostly inactive on very light demand. Although too few transactions to trend, there were a few live sales in the western Corn Belt at $103.00 to $106.25/cwt. Last week, live sales were at $108/cwt. in the Southern Plains and at mostly $105 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at mostly $165.

Cattle futures closed lower Tuesday, likely pressured in part by some pre-holiday position squaring, technical correction and the lack of cash direction.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 70¢ lower from 27¢ lower in spot Dec to $1.20 lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 81¢ lower except for unchanged in the back two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 25¢ lower at $210.67/cwt. Select was $2.33 higher at $199.59.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 3¢ higher through Sep ‘21 and then mostly fractionally lower to 1¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 2¢ to 4¢ higher through Aug ’21, and then mostly 1¢ to 3¢ lower.

December 22nd, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 22, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the five-area feeding region through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live sales last week were at $108/cwt. in the Southern Plains and at mostly $105 in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at mostly $165.

Cattle futures closed mainly higher Monday, supported by the nascent reversal in wholesale beef values and Friday’s friendly Cattle on Feed report.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 28¢ higher except for 22¢ lower in near Feb.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 73¢ higher from 17¢ higher in spot Jan to $1.02 higher at the back.

Wholesale beef prices continued to firm. Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.29 higher at $210.92/cwt. Monday afternoon. Select was $2.99 higher at $197.26.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 2¢ higher through Jly ‘22 and then mostly unchanged to fractionally lower.

Soybean futures closed 17¢ to 23¢ higher through Aug ’21, and then mostly 7¢ to 10¢ higher.

December 21st, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 21, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was limited on very light demand. Although too few to trend, there were a few live sales in Nebraska at $107/cwt.

For the week, live sales were steady in the Southern Plains at $108/cwt., $1-$2 lower in Nebraska at $105 and $1 lower in the western Corn Belt at $105. Dressed trade was $3 lower at $165.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 88¢ lower at $208.63/cwt. Select was 57¢ higher at $194.27.

Estimated total cattle slaughter last week of 659,000 head was 6,000 head fewer than the previous week and 9,000 head fewer than the same week last year.

Year-to-date estimated total cattle slaughter of 31.29 million head is 1.08 million fewer (-3.3%) than last year. Estimated year-to-date beef production of 26.02 billion lbs. is 223.6 million lbs. less (-0.85%) than the same time last year.

Net U.S. beef export sales for the week ending Dec. 10 were up noticeably from the prior week and 15% more than the previous four-week average, according to USDA’s weekly U.S. Export Sales report. Increases were primarily for Japan, South Korea, Canada, Mexico and China.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed Friday, as traders awaited the monthly Cattle on Feed report (see below), and in the face of rising grain futures prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 36¢ higher except for unchanged to an average of 3¢ lower in three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed from an average of 33¢ lower to an average of 15¢ higher.

Corn futures closed 3¢ to 5¢ higher through Jly ‘22 and then unchanged to fractionally higher.

Soybean futures closed 12¢ to 18¢ higher through Aug ’21, 7¢ to 9¢ higher through Sep ’22 and then mostly fractionally lower.

December 19th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 18, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices were steady in the Southern Plains through Thursday afternoon at $108/cwt., according to the Agricultural Marketing Service, but there were too few transactions for a market trend.

There were also some live trades in Nebraska at $105, steady with the previous day but $1-$2 lower than the previous week. Dressed trades there on Wednesday were $3 lower at $165.

So far this week live trades are steady to $1 lower in the western Corn Belt at $105 on a lived basis and $3 lower in the beef at $165.

Cattle futures closed higher Thursday, supported by early signs that wholesale beef prices may be at or near the seasonal ebb. Firmness could also stem from expectations that Friday’s monthly Cattle on Feed report will be market friendly, with significantly lower year-over-year placements in November.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 50¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 82¢ higher from 12¢ higher in spot Jan to $1.22 higher.

Corn futures closed 3¢ to 5¢ higher through Sep ‘21 and then mostly 1¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 14¢ to 17¢ higher through Aug ’21 and then mostly 7¢ to 9¢ higher.

December 17th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 17, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was slow to moderate on moderate demand in Nebraska through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Live prices were $1-$2 lower than last week at $105/cwt. Dressed prices were $3 lower at $165.

There were a few early sales in the western Corn Belt at $105 live and at $165 in the beef, but too few to trend. Prices last week were at $104-$105 and $168, respectively.

Trade was at a standstill in the Southern Plains. Prices there last week were at $108.

However, slaughter steers at the Sioux Falls Regional auction in South Dakota sold $3-$5 higher; $2-$4 higher for fat heifers. There were 185 Choice 2-3 steers weighing an average of 1,469 lbs. bringing an average of $107.13.

Cattle futures closed higher Wednesday, perhaps helped along by positioning ahead of Friday’s monthly Cattle on Feed report.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 61¢ higher, from 17¢ higher in spot Dec to 90¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 84¢ higher.

Choice Boxed beef cutout value was $1.60 lower Wednesday afternoon at $207.22/cwt. Select was 11¢ lower at $192.09.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ higher. ,

Soybean futures closed fractionally lower through Aug ‘21 and then mostly 4¢ to 5¢ lower.

December 16th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 16, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was a standstill in the Southern Plains through Tuesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, trade was very limited on very light demand. Live sales last week were at $108/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $106-$107 in Nebraska and at $104-$105 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at mostly $168.

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed Tuesday, pressured by sluggish trade, as well as cash and wholesale beef weakness. Feeder Cattle edged mostly higher, perhaps helped along by brighter supply fundamentals down the road.

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from an average of 32¢ lower to an average of 12¢ higher, except for unchanged in away-Feb.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 26¢ higher, except for 5¢ lower toward the back of the board.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 87¢ lower Tuesday afternoon at $208.82/cwt. Select was 10¢ lower at $192.20.

Corn futures closed fractionally higher to 1¢ higher except for 5¢ lower in spot Dec.

Soybean futures closed mostly 10¢ to 14¢ higher through Aug ‘21 and then mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ higher.

December 15th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 15, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was a standstill in the five-area marketing region through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live sales last week were at $108/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $106-$107 in Nebraska and at $104-$105 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at mostly $168.

The five-area direct weighted average steer price last week was $106.75 on a live basis, which was $3 less than the previous week. The average steer price in the beef of $167.77 was $4.52 lower.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed Monday, amid sluggish activity and awaiting cash direction, especially given last week’s disappointing trade in terms of both price and volume. However, they retained the lion’s share of gains made in the previous session.

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from an average of 17¢ lower to unchanged to an average of 17¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from an average of 17¢ lower to an average of 19¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $4.19 lower Monday at $209.69/cwt. Select was $3.41 lower at $192.30.

Corn futures closed mostly unchanged to fractionally mixed, except for 5¢ lower in spot Dec.

Soybean futures closed mostly 4¢ to 9¢ higher.

December 14th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 14, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week, live prices were generally $2 lower in the Southern Plains at $108/cwt., and $4-$5 lower in the western Corn Belt at $104-$105. Dressed trade was $4 lower in the western Corn Belt at $168. The previous week, prices in Nebraska were at $110 on a live basis and at $172-$174 in the beef.

Through Thursday, the weighted average five-area direct fed steer price was $106.86/cwt., which was $2.91 less than the previous week and $11.95 less than the previous year. The average steer price in the beef was $167.80, which was $4.49 less than the previous week and $20.31 less than the same time last year.  

Estimated total cattle slaughter last week of 665,000 head was 2,000 head less than the previous week and 11,000 head fewer than the same week last year. Total estimated year-to-date cattle slaughter of 30.63 million head is 1.07 million less (-3.38%) than a year earlier.

Estimated beef production last week of 559 million lbs. was 800,000 less than the previous week. Estimated year-to-date beef production of 25.46 billion lbs. was 227 million lbs. less (-0.88 %) than the same time last year.

Choice was 71¢ lower at $213.88/cwt. Select was $2.76 lower at $195.71.

Cattle futures closed higher Friday, extending gains from the previous session as open interest creeps higher, perhaps emboldened by an apparent top in year-over year carcass weights and demand promise with FDA issuing emergency use authorization for the first COVID-19 vaccine (see below).

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 95¢ higher, from 42¢ to $1.40 higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.01 higher, from 45¢ higher toward the back to $2.12 higher in spot Jan.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 2¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 5¢ to 7¢ higher.

December 13th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 11, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on light demand in Nebraska and in the western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were a few live sales in Nebraska at $107/cwt. and a few dressed trades at $168, but too few to trend. Last week, live sales there were at $110 and dressed sales were at $172-$174.

In other regions this week:

Southern Plains—$108, which is $2 less than last week.

Western Corn Belt—$104-$105 on a live basis, which is $5 less than last week; $168 in the beef, which is $6 lower.

Cattle futures closed higher Thursday, with more activity, perhaps by bottom picking funds looking ahead to stronger demand once COVID-19 vaccinations take root.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 67¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 58¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.67 lower Thursday afternoon at $214.59/cwt. Select was $3.18 lower at $198.47.

The average dressed steer weight the week ending Nov. 28 was 921 lbs., which was 2 lbs. lighter than the previous week but 10 lbs. heavier than the previous year, according to USDA’s Actual Slaughter Under Federal Inspection report. The average dressed heifer weight was 850 lbs., which was 3 lbs. heavier than the prior week and 10 lbs. heavier than the prior year.

Net U.S. beef export sales for 2020 of 3,000 metric tons (mt) were 78% less than the previous week and 80% less than the prior four-week average, according to the weekly U.S. Export Sales report from USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service. Increases were primarily for Japan, Canada, China, and Indonesia.

December 10th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 10, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the Southern Plains through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Live prices there on Tuesday were $2 lower than last week at $108/cwt.

Elsewhere, trade was slow on light demand. There were a few live trades in Nebraska at $107 and a few in the western Corn Belt at $104.50-$105.00, but too few to trend. There was some early dressed trade in both regions at $168, but also too few to trend. Last week, live prices were at $110 in Nebraska and at $109-$110 in the western Corn Belt; dressed trade at $172-$174.

Cattle futures mostly edged higher by the close Wednesday, helped by firming Lean Hog futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 25¢ higher except for 47¢ lower in spot Dec.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 41¢ higher except for 55¢ lower in spot Jan.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $6.76 lower Wednesday afternoon at $218.26/cwt. Select was $3.77 lower at $201.65.

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 5¢ higher through Sep ’21 and then mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 11¢ to 12¢ higher through Jly ’21 and then mostly 5¢ to 7¢ higher.

December 9th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 9, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade started the week at lower money Tuesday. Live prices were $2-$4 lower in the Texas Panhandle at $108/cwt. and $2 lower in Nebraska at $108, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. That was on slow trade and light demand. There were a few dressed sales in the western Corn Belt at $168, but too few to trend. Last week, dressed trade was at $172.

The five-area direct November weighted average fed steer price was $108.85/cwt. on  a live basis, which was $2.20 more than the previous month, but $6.50 less than the previous year. The weighted average steer price in the beef was $170.34, which was $2.87 more than the prior month but $12.20 less than the prior year.

Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed on Tuesday, finding some stability following the strong retreat in the previous session, perhaps helped along by softer grain futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 14¢ lower except for unchanged to 17¢ higher in three contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 45¢ higher except for 22¢ lower in spot Jan.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $5.78 lower Tuesday afternoon at $225.02/cwt. Select was $4.06 lower at $205.42.

Corn futures closed mostly 1¢ to 3¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 6¢ to 12¢ lower through Sep ’21 and then mostly unchanged to 2¢ lower.

December 8th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 8, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Last week, live prices were at $110-$112/cwt. in the Texas Panhandle, $110 in Kansas and Nebraska and at $109-$110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $172.

The average five-area direct steer price last week was $109.75 on a live basis, which was 52¢ less than the previous week. The average steer price in the beef was $172.29, which was $1.08 lower.

Cattle futures closed lower on Monday, pressured by fast-falling wholesale beef values and sluggish trade.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 93¢ lower except for an average of 12¢ higher in the back two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.33 lower.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $4.22 lower Monday afternoon at $230.80/cwt. Select was $8.03 lower at $209.48.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 5¢ to 7¢ higher except for fractionally lower to 4¢ lower in the front three contracts.

December 7th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 7, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on light demand in all major cattle feeding regions through Friday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

For the week, live prices were $1 lower to $1 higher in the Texas Panhandle at $110-$112/cwt. They were $1 lower in Kansas at $110. Live prices were steady to $1 lower in Nebraska at $109-$110 and steady to $1 lower in the western Corn Belt at $109. Dressed trade was steady to $2 lower at $172-$174.

Through Thursday, the five-area direct weighted average steer price was $109.77 on a live basis, which was 40¢ lower than the previous week and $9.18 less than the same week last year. The average steer price in the beef was $1.10 lower week to week at $172.29; $15.45 lower year over year.

Cattle futures mostly closed lower on Friday, but found some footing in the wake of the previous session’s strong decline.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 24¢ lower except for an average of 12¢ higher in the back two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed from an average of 14¢ lower to an average of 8¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $4.17 lower Friday afternoon at $235.02/cwt. Select was $2.42 lower at $217.51.

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 6¢ lower through Sep ’21 and then mostly fractionally lower.

Soybean futures closed 1¢ to 5¢ lower through Jan ’22 and then fractionally higher.

December 6th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 4, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices continued steady to lower on Thursday with live trade in Kansas $1 lower at $110, steady to $1 lower in Nebraska at $109-$110. Dressed trade in Nebraska was steady to $2 lower at $172-$174.

Cattle futures closed lower on Thursday, pressured by softer cash prices, lower wholesale beef values and another day of higher front-month corn futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 82¢ lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.36 lower from 95¢ lower to $2.00 lower in spot Jan.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.70 lower Thursday afternoon at $239.19/cwt. Select was $3.02 lower at $219.93.

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 3¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 16¢ higher through Sep ’21 and then mostly 7¢ to 8¢ higher.

December 4th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 3, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices started the week’s trade on a mixed basis Wednesday. Live trades were unevenly steady in Texas at $110-$112/cwt. on moderate trade and light to moderate demand, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were a few early trades in Kansas at $110, but too few to trend. Prices in the Southern Plains last week were at $111.

Live trade in Nebraska was steady to $1 lower at $110 on light to moderate trade and demand. There were a few dressed trades at $172-$174, but too few to trend; $174 last week. Trade in the western Corn Belt last week was at $109-$110 on a live basis and at $172-$174 in the beef.

Cattle futures mostly eked out gains on Wednesday, despite a pullback in Choice boxed beef value and stronger front-month Corn futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 22¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 18¢ higher except for 5¢ lower in the back two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.51 lower Wednesday afternoon at $240.89/cwt. Select was 13¢ lower at $222.95.

Corn futures closed 2¢ to 4¢ higher through Sep ’21 and then mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed 7¢ to 9¢ lower through Sep ’21 and then 3¢ to 5¢ lower.

December 2nd, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 2, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Tuesday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Last week, live prices were at $111/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $110-$111 in Nebraska and $109-$110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $172-$174.

Cattle futures closed higher on Tuesday, supported by ongoing strength in wholesale beef values and the outlook for steady to higher cash prices this week.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 47¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 81¢ higher.

By the way, winter wheat condition improved week to week, according to the USDA Crop Progress report for the week ending Nov. 29. 46% was rated as Good (40%) or Excellent (6%) versus 43% the previous week and 52% the previous year. 18% was rated as Poor (13%) or Very Poor (5%) compared to 21% the prior week and 14% the prior year.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 28¢ lower Tuesday afternoon at $243.40/cwt. Select was 65¢ higher at $223.08.

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 5¢ lower through Sep ’21 and then mostly 1¢ to 2¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 4¢ to 6¢ lower.

December 1st, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Dec. 1, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was at a standstill through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Last week, live prices were at $111/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $110-$111 in Nebraska and $109-$110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $172-$174.

More narrowly, last week’s five-area direct average steer price was $110.27/cwt. on a live basis, which was 70¢ higher than the previous week, according to USDA data. The average steer price in the beef was $1.67 higher at $173.37.

Cattle futures closed mixed on Monday, amid month-end position squaring and some support from weaker grain futures.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 31¢ lower except for an average of 7¢ higher in the back two contracts.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 75¢ higher, from 55¢ higher at the back to $1.22 higher in spot Jan.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 83¢ higher Monday afternoon at $243.68/cwt. Select was $1.75 higher at $222.43.

Corn futures closed mostly 5¢ to 7¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed 14¢ to 23¢ lower.

November 30th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Nov. 30, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices ended the week generally steady to $1 higher on a live basis and $2 higher in the beef, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices were at $111/cwt. in the Southern Plains, $110-$111 in Nebraska and $109-$110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed trade was at $174.

Cattle futures mostly drifted lower on Friday, amid extremely light holiday trade.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 47¢ lower (32¢ to 92¢ lower).

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 24¢ lower except for an average of 26¢ higher in two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.21 lower Friday afternoon at $242.85/cwt. Select was 22¢ lower at $220.68.

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 5¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly 6¢ to 7¢ higher.

November 28th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Nov. 26-27, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices were generally steady to $1 higher on a live basis and $2 higher in the beef, through Wednesday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.

Live prices were at $111/cwt. in the Southern Plains on moderate demand and trade. Live prices were at $110 in the western Corn Belt on slow trade and moderate demand. There were a few in Nebraska at $110. Dressed trade was at $174.

Cattle futures mostly continued gains on Wednesday, buoyed by stronger cash markets, weaker grain futures, stronger wholesale beef values and light pre-holiday trade.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 27¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 92¢ higher (25¢ to $1.57 higher) except for 7¢ lower and 32¢ lower in the back two contracts.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 76¢ higher Wednesday afternoon at $245.06/cwt. Select was $1.19 higher at $220.90.

Corn futures closed 5¢ lower through Jly ’21 and then mostly unchanged to 1¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed mostly 5¢ to 7¢ lower.

November 25th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Nov. 25, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade remained undeveloped through Tuesday afternoon, but the recent surge in Cattle futures and wholesale beef values bolstered hope for higher prices.

Cattle futures extended gains on Tuesday, supported by the previous session’s optimism and the brighter outlook for cash prices.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of 50¢ higher (10¢ to $1.17 higher) except for 55¢ lower in the back contract.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 50¢ higher except for 2¢ lower in May.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.70 higher Tuesday afternoon at $244.30/cwt. Select was $2.23 higher at $219.71.

Corn futures closed narrowly mixed, mostly from 1¢ lower to 1¢ higher.

Soybean futures closed mostly fractionally higher to 1¢ higher.

November 24th, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Nov. 24, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill, according to data from the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Last week, live prices were at $110/cwt. in the Southern Plains and Nebraska and at $109-$110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices are steady at $172.

Cattle futures closed sharply higher on Monday, shaking off last week’s blues with the help of higher outside markets and an apparently bullish view of Friday’s Cattle on Feed report.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.99 higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.83 higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $3.25 higher Monday afternoon at $241.60/cwt. Select was $2.50 higher at $217.48.

Corn futures closed mostly 3¢ to 5¢ higher

Soybean futures closed 10¢ to 12¢ higher through Aug ’21 and then mostly 4¢-7¢ higher.

November 23rd, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Nov. 23, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle prices ended last week steady, according to data from the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Live prices were at $110 in the Southern Plains and Nebraska and at $109-$110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices are steady at $172.

Estimated cattle slaughter for the week ending Nov. 21 was 665,000 head, according to USDA. That would be 12,000 head more than the prior week, but 3,000 head fewer than the same week last year. Estimated year-to-date total cattle slaughter of 28.73 million head would be 1.07 million fewer (-3.59%) than same period last year.

Estimated beef production for the week of 559.1 million lbs. would be 9.3 million lbs. more than the previous week and 5.4 million lbs. more than the same week last year. Year-to-date estimated beef production of 23.87 billion lbs. would be 245.8 million lbs. less (-1.02%) than the same period last year.

Cattle futures closed mixed on Friday with higher Lean Hog futures helping reverse some early pressure and firm following the previous session’s pullback.

Live Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed, from an average of 33¢ lower to an average of 14¢ higher.

Feeder Cattle futures closed mixed, from an average of 55¢ lower across the front half of the board to an average of 27¢ higher.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was 65¢ higher Friday afternoon at $238.35/cwt. Select was $1.09 higher at $214.98.

Corn futures closed mostly fractionally mixed.

Soybean futures closed 2¢ to 6¢ higher through Sep and then mostly 1¢ lower.

November 21st, 2020|

Cattle Current Podcast—Nov. 20, 2020

Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was limited on moderate demand in Kansas, Nebraska and the western Corn Belt through Thursday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. There were a few live trades at $110/cwt. and a few in the beef at $172, but too few to trend. Established prices for the week are mainly steady with live trade at $110 in the Southern Plains and Nebraska and at $109-$110 in the western Corn Belt. Dressed prices are steady at $172.

Cattle futures closed sharply lower Thursday. Lingering pressures include persistently higher grain prices and languishing cash fed cattle prices. Chatter about fears of more pandemic-driven packing disruptions contributed to the day’s decline.

Live Cattle futures closed an average of $1.85 lower, from 92¢ lower at the back to $2.62 lower.

Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $2.10 lower, except for 25¢ lower in expiring Nov.

Choice boxed beef cutout value was $1.86 higher Thursday afternoon at $237.70/cwt. Select was 27¢ higher at $213.89.

Net U.S. beef export sales (2020) for the week ending Nov. 12 totaled 46,400 metric tons, up noticeably from the previous week and the prior four-week average, according to the weekly U.S. Export Sales report from USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service. Increases were primarily for South Korea, Mexico, Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Corn futures closed 1¢ to 3¢ lower.

Soybean futures closed fractionally mixed to 4¢ higher.