Cash fed cattle prices finally began to level out just a bit. For the week, the accumulated weighted average price across the major feeding regions for steers was $146.68 live, down $0.40 compared to the previous Friday, and $236 for dressed, up $1.45. Cash trades in the Texas Panhandle were reported at $145. All other regions had light trade.
Feeder steers were called steady to $2 higher in Oklahoma City on Monday. Feeder heifers and all calves were steady in OKC. Feeder steers were $4 higher while heifers were $1 higher in Mississippi markets this week. Calves were steady to $10 higher.
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Cattle futures were up this week, ending the day Friday $2 or more ahead of the previous week’s Thursday close. Improvement in wholesale boxed beef prices was the primary catalyst for the improved prices. Feeder calves were also higher, with fall 2014 contracts improving $3 or more, in spite of higher corn prices. The improved live cattle market and continued supply concerns helped propel prices. USDA, NASS released their April Cattle on Feed report after markets closed Friday. The report revealed fewer cattle placed than were expected and a smaller than expected overall fed cattle inventory, which should help markets Monday. For more detail on the report CLICK HERE.
Corn futures were higher with contracts over the next year ending the week $0.10 to $0.12 higher. Strong export sales early in the week pushed prices higher followed by a mostly steady end to the week.
Wholesale boxed beef prices were moderately higher this week, putting a stop to a four week slide for Choice and a five week slide for Select. Choice boxes averaged $231.91, up $7.64. Select boxes were $220.41, up $6.35.
Note: all cattle and beef prices are quoted in dollars per hundredweight and corn prices are quoted in dollars per bushel, unless stated otherwise.