You know it's going to be a bullish marketing week when the fed cattle trade happens on Wednesday rather than the usual rush at the end of the week. Try this on for size: $5-$6 higher in mostly midweek trading. Resulting optimism, not to mention hedging opportunities, fueled the stocker and feeder cattle market, too, pushing the market $3 higher.

"Trends were bullish on all classes of cattle, following the prior week's multiple fed cattle trading sessions that grew progressively higher. Packers were even more aggressive last week and feedlots were shrewd sellers with the backing of the spot August CME Live Cattle Futures which have been trading at a significant premium to cash," say USDA Ag Marketing Service (AMS) analysts.

The analysts also said: "Demand was also noticeably improved for lightweight calves (under 500 lbs.), which have been lackluster for the last several weeks and appear to be a bargain next to yearlings and heavy calves with the condition to go right on feed. Most grazing areas are very low on forage but commodity feed continues to cheapen as Friday's USDA crop production report estimated this year's corn crop at 10.976 billion bu. That's well above the average trade estimate and sent a bearish signal; September CBOT Corn futures were down over 14¢ on Friday. The cattle horizon is beginning to look much brighter with Choice boxed beef cut-out values gaining over $7 this past week and Select over $9."

The summary below reflects the week ended Aug. 11 for Medium and Large 1 -- 500- to 550-lb., 600- to 650-lb., and 700- to 750-lb. feeder heifers and steers (unless otherwise noted). The list is arranged in descending order by auction volume and represents sales reported in the weekly USDA National Feeder and Stocker Cattle Summary:

Summary Table
State Volume Steers Heifers
Calf Weight 500-550 lbs. 600-650 lbs. 700-750 lbs. 500-550 lbs. 600-650 lbs. 700-750 lbs.
OK 39,300 $123.96 $119.71 $115.85 $115.72 $113.22 $109.28
TX 30,300 $118.23 $115.53 $114.65 $112.04 $109.74 $100.15
MO 21,300 $131.39 $124.72 $116.80 $116.78 $112.64 $104.80
Dakotas 16,900
South Dakota
North Dakota

$130.40
**

$121.18
$123.804

$120.32
$124.00

$118.102
**

$121.87
**

$114.67
$113.56
KY* 15,200 $116-126 $108-118 $104-1145 $107-117 $100-1103 $94-1045
AL 123,700 $115-124 $108-114 $100-1104 $107-113 $100-106 $98-1034
NE 12,000 ** ** $122.40 $121.022 $116.034 $115.63
KS 10,400 $133.77 $126.17 $120.03 $124.36 $115.51 $113.65
AR 9,800 $121.01 $112.25 $108.26 $108.60 105.36 $99.14
TN* 9,600 $116.76 $110.67 $104.93 $108.06 $102.18 $96.40
IA 9,200 $133.41 $130.66 $122.61 $125.45 120.19 $114.76
GA* 8,700 $104-128 $96-115 $93-109 $100-113 $92-105 $100-1014
FL* 7,500 $100-118 $99-109 $91-1034 $97-116 $95-106 $89-954
FL* 7,500 $100-118 $99-109 $91-103 $97-116 $95-106 $89-95
MS* 7,500 $110-1201 $100-1103 ** $100-1101 $90-1003 **
VA 6,400 $122.16 $118.53 $112.98 $111.11 $107.68 $97.08
Carolinas* 5,900 $100-121.50 $95-1183 $89-109.505 $94-114 $87-1103 $84-99.505
LA* 4,400 $108-120 $101-1143 ** $100-1171 $97-1073 **
CO 2,600 ** ** ** ** ** **
WY* 2,000 ** $115.702 $106.98 ** $112.442 $100.24
WA* 2,000 ** $115.702 $106.98 ** $112.442 $100.24
NM* 1,200 ** ** ** ** ** **

* Plus 2
** None reported at this weight or near weight
(***) Steers and bulls
NDNo Description
1500-600 lbs.
2550-600 lbs.
3600-700 lbs.
4650-700 lbs.
5700-800 lbs.
6750-800 lbs.
7800-850 lbs.