Hog futures supported by strength in wholesale values
At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live and feeder cattle closed mostly lower on spread trade and technical weakness. August live cattle closed $.17 higher at $102.80 and October live cattle closed $.52 lower at $106.54. August feeder cattle closed $.75 lower at $142.72 and September feeder cattle closed $.75 lower at $145.12.
Direct cash cattle trade ended the week on a quiet note. There were some scattered cleanup deals reported in Nebraska and Iowa at $163 dressed and in Kansas at $100 live. All fully steady with the week’s previous business. We saw another week where light to moderate business that took place throughout most areas. Southern live deals were mostly at $99 to $100 and Northern dressed business mostly at $163. Both of those are above the previous week’s weighted averages.
In Missouri this past week, steers were steady to $4 higher and heifers sold mostly steady to $2 higher. The supply of feeders was moderate to heavy. Receipts were up on the week and the year. Feeder supply included 57 percent steers and 54 percent of the offering was over 600 pounds. Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 700 to 749 pounds brought $135 to $154.10 and feeder steers 800 to 848 pounds brought $104 to $144.50. Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 550 to 599 pounds brought $124 to $155.75 and feeder heifers 600 to 649 pounds brought $121 to $150.50.
In South Dakota all classes of hay were steady to firm. The USDA says demand was moderate with most hay users only buying what they currently need. Scattered rains made it difficult for some growers to put up their third cutting of alfalfa, however drought conditions have expanded across the state as many areas are in need of a good rain. Alfalfa supreme large squares brought $250. Premium large squares brough $180. Good large squares brought $210 to $225 for an average of $220. Alfalfa good large rounds brought $125 and large squares brought $150. Alfalfa/grass premium large rounds brought $140 and fair large squares brought $130.
Boxed beef closed firm with moderate demand for light to moderate offerings. Choice closed $.81 higher at $205.47 and Select closed $.74 higher at $192.75. The Choice/Select spread is $12.72. Estimated cattle slaughter is 109,000 head – down 4,000 on the week and down 8,000 on the year. Saturday’s estimated slaughter is 60,000 head, up 9,000 on the week and up 13,000 on the year.
Lean hog futures closed higher, supported by the recent strength in wholesale prices. August lean hogs closed $1.25 higher at $51 and October lean hogs closed $1.77 higher at $50.95.
Cash hogs closed steady to weak with solid negotiated numbers. Supply and demand continue to drive the market. Demand uncertainty remains, especially domestically as unemployment levels, while declining, are still extraordinarily high. Global demand has been strong, but has been very reliant on China. At the same time, supplies of market-ready barrows and gilts are higher and processors keep pushing daily slaughter totals higher, adding more pork into the market. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $.17 higher with a base range of $35 to $38.61 for a weighted average of $38.11; the Iowa/Minnesota closed $.65 lower for a weighted average of $37.97; the Western Corn Belt closed $.62 lower for a weighted average of $37.97. The Eastern Corn Belt was not reported due to confidentiality.
This week’s Feeder Pig Report from the USDA has early-weaned pigs $3 per head higher and all feeder pigs steady. Demand was moderate for light to moderate offerings and receipts included 44 percent formulated prices. The total composite formula range for early-weaned pigs is $13.17 to $42.72 for an average of $31.33. The total composite cash range is $3 to $18.50 for an average of $12.40. The Total Composite weighted average for all early-weaned pigs is $20.99 and the average for all feeder pigs is $15.47.
Midwest cash markets were closed on Friday. At Illinois, slaughter sows prices were steady with moderate to good demand for moderate offerings at $11 to $23. Barrow and gilt prices were firm at $19 to $24 with moderate demand for moderate to heavy offerings. Boars ranged from $1 to $3.
Pork values closed higher – up $1.13 at $71.93. Loins closed sharply higher. Picnics, hams, and ribs were all higher. Bellies closed weak and butts were sharply lower. Estimated hog slaughter is 474,000 head that’s even on the week and up 25,000 on the year. Saturday’s estimated kill is 230,000 head, up 53,000 on the week and up 178,000 on the year.