Cattle and hogs begin a quiet trading week

Market News

Cattle and hogs begin a quiet trading week

The Direct cash cattle trade was quiet Monday and cash hogs closed lower.

The cattle trade was typically quiet Monday, even more so because of Christmas, with bids and asking prices yet to be established.

At the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, cattle were mixed, waiting for cash business to develop. Trade will likely be slow this week as feedlots could hold for even or higher cash trade. A light cattle on feed report is also putting downward pressure into the cattle futures complex, but live futures were up $.32 to off $.35. Feeder contracts were also mixed, up $.22 to off $1.05.

Significant trade volume will likely be delayed until Tuesday or Wednesday, but again, it’s expected to be a quiet week. New showlists appear to be mixed, higher in Kansas and Texas, but lower in Nebraska and Colorado.

Sioux Falls Regional Stockyards was the lone South Dakota feeder auction last week. Demand remains very good for all weights of feeder steers and heifers.

In that auction, 212 head of medium and large Number 1 steers, weighing 602 to 639, brought $174.00 to $189.50.

102 head of 706 to 749-pound steers brought $160.00 to $174.50.

Medium and large Number 1 heifers; 112 head of 519 to 548 pounders brought $165.00 to $179.00.

167 head, weighing 603 to 649 pounds, brought $154.00 to $170.00.

Boxed beef closed higher; choice boxes $1.65 higher at $264.59. Select boxes closed $2.23 higher at $255.18.

Monday’s estimated cattle slaughter was 116,000, 4,000 fewer than a week ago, a thousand fewer than a year ago.

Hog futures are continuing their positive momentum from last week’s bullish hogs and pigs report. The futures market will be closely watching cash trade to close the year. Expected lower holiday slaughter totals could be a limiting factor in the market.

Generally, demand for US pork is strong, but there are long-term demand concerns. That has put pressure on prices.  Processors haven’t had to be aggressive about getting hogs.

National Direct hogs closed $.78 lower, ranging from $59.00 to $63.00, with a weighted average of $59.75. Iowa/Minnesota Direct hogs closed with a weighted average of $61.48, and Western Cornbelt hogs at $61.04.

The pork carcass cutout value closed $5.14 lower, at $86.33.

Monday’s estimated hog slaughter is 480,000, the same as last week and 8,000 fewer than a year ago.