Livestock futures end last day of 2020 mostly higher
At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live cattle futures were up and feeders were mostly higher, supported by the week’s direct cash business, which helped feeders shrug off the continued rally in corn. December live cattle expired at $112.95, up $.82, while February was $.57 higher at $115.02 and April gained $.65 to $119.25. January feeder cattle were $.42 higher at $138.95 and March was up $.47 at $140.22.
Light to moderate direct cash cattle trade developed by the end of the day. Deals in the South came in at $111 to $112, $2 higher than last week’s weighted averages. Dressed deals in the North are around $176, $4 higher than last week’s weighted averages.
Boxed beef values closed lower. Choice ended down 58 cents at $209.95 and select is $4.21 lower at $195.65.
At the Huss Livestock Market in Kearney, Nebraska, steers from 650 to 900 pounds sold $3 to $4 higher than the previous week and heifers sold steady to $3 higher. The USDA says demand was good for moderate offerings. Supply included 58 percent steers and 91 percent of the offering was over 600 pounds. Medium and large 1 steers weighing 707 to 749 pounds brought $146.75 to $152 for an average of $149.95. Steers weighing 758 to 817 pounds brought $143.50 to $149. Medium and large 1 heifers weighing 655 to 691 pounds brought $135 to $143 for an average of $140.90. Heifers weighing 759 to 789 pounds brought $134 to $137.25, averaging $136.21.
Estimated cattle slaughter is 99,000 head, up 32,000 on the week but down 25,000 on the year.
Lean hog futures were higher, supported by a good week for export sales and the cash and wholesale business during the session. February was up $2.67 at $70.27 and April was $1.17 higher at $72.25.
Cash hogsended the day higher. The market received an upward tic heading into the holiday as processors made deals to fill their needs on the last marketing day of the shortened week. There is still overarching downward pressure from a backlog of hogs entering an already ample market. Buyers and sellers will be watching the supply and demand picture closely as China continues the rebuilding of its hog herd.
Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $1.74 higher for a weighted average of $50.85. The Iowa/Minnesota closed 21 cents higher for a weighted average of $50.29. The Western Cornbelt closed 29 cents higher for a weighted average of $50.36. The Eastern Cornbelt closed with a weighted average of $51.93 with no comparison to yesterday.
Pork values closed sharply higher, up $5.93. Hams and bellies closed sharply higher, up more than $12. Loins, butts, picnics, and ribs all closed higher.
Estimated hog slaughter is 425,000 head, up 141,000 on the week but down 66,000 on the year.