Hog futures mixed to start the week
At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, live cattle closed lower ahead of widespread direct business. Feeder cattle were mostly lower on spread adjustments. October live cattle closed $1.52 lower at $108.35 and December live cattle closed $1.77 lower at $110.92. October feeder cattle closed $.95 lower at $137.30 and November contracts closed $.02 higher at $135.55.
It was a quiet Monday for direct cash cattle trade activity. Showlists this week appear to be lower in the South and slightly larger in the North. Bids and asking prices have yet to surface. And it’s likely significant trade volume will be delayed until sometime later in the week.
At midsession at the Oklahoma National Stockyards, compared to last week, feeder steers and heifers are $6 to $8 lower with instances of $10 lower. Steer and heifer calves are lightly tested, however, a sharply lower undertone is noted. The USDA says demand was light to moderate and quality was plain to average, with a few attractive. Receipts are up on the week and lower on the year. Feeder supply included 65 percent steers and 68 percent of the offering was over 600 pounds. Medium and Large 1 feeder steers 715 to 747 pounds brought $139 to $140 and feeder steers 800 to 840 pounds brought $132 to $139. Medium and Large 1 feeder heifers 676 to 696 pounds brought $123 to $136 and feeder heifers 702 to 745 pounds brought $123 to $133.
Boxed beef closed firm on moderate demand for moderate offerings. Choice closed $.56 higher at $214.62 and Select closed $.52 higher at $200.34. Estimated cattle slaughter is 117,000 head – up 1,000 on the week and 2,000 on the year.
Lean hog future closed mixed on spread adjustments and technical activity. October lean hogs closed $.05 higher at $78.17 and December lean hogs closed $.50 lower at $66.62.
Cash hogs closed lower with moderate negotiated purchases. The industry remains largely focused on the supply and demand picture. While there is optimism demand for US pork will see a big boost on the global market, the heavy supplies weigh on prices. Pork processors continue to ramp up daily slaughter totals in an effort to work through the backlog of hogs in the production system that resulted from the pandemic-related slowdowns and shutdowns. While that helps to keep the supply chain moving, it also adds more pork to an already saturated market. Barrows and gilts at the National Daily Direct closed $.60 lower with a base range of $58 to $66 for a weighted average of $63.99; the Iowa/Minnesota closed $.93 lower for a weighted average of $64.49; the Western Corn Belt closed $.95 lower with a weighted average of $64.43. The Eastern Corn Belt was not reported due to confidentiality.
Butcher hog prices at the Midwest cash markets are steady at $50.
Pork values closed weak – down $.49 at $94.31. Hams, butts, and picnics were all lower. Loins, bellies, and ribs were firm to higher. Estimated hog slaughter is 490,000 head – up 1,000 on the week and 3,000 on the year.