Steve Kay's Friday Market Update

July 18 -- The cash live cattle trade Friday morning was light up north and inactive down south. USDA’s mandatory price reporting (MPR) service reported that Nebraska sold 4,610 head at $157.71/cwt. live or $248.07 dressed for a weekly total of 46,117 head. Iowa-southern Minnesota sold 3,876 head at $156.18 live or $246.08 dressed for a weekly total of 33,726 head. Kansas sold no cattle for a weekly total of 22,922 head. Texas sold 331 head at $155.00 live for a weekly total of 6,121 head (692 head strictly cash). The MPR weekly totals include negotiated cash and grid sales.

Live cattle futures closed higher. August closed up 97 points at $151.62, October closed up 62 points at $154.32, December closed up 70 points at $154.55, February closed up 2 points at $153.77, April closed up 25 points at $154.17 and June closed up 17 points at $145.72.

The week’s cattle slaughter was an estimated 577,000 head (vs. 653,246 head last year), with Friday’s kill 114,000 head and Saturday’s kill 4,000 head. Year-to-date FI slaughter is an estimated 16.494M head, down 6.8% or 1.205M head from 2013’s 17.699M head. Hog slaughter year to date is down 4.7% or 2.803M head on last year.

Boxed-beef cutout values were lower on light demand and light to moderate offerings. The Choice cutout declined $1.36/cwt. from the day before to $248.45 and the Select cutout declined $1.58 to $242.65. The Choice-Select price spread was $5.80, vs. $6.95 the Friday before. The reported spot boxed-beef trade for the week was 606 loads of fabricated cuts, up 31.5% from the 461 loads of fabricated cuts last week.

Packer margins for the week were positive by $35.66/head, compared to a positive $22.43 the week before, according to HedgersEdge.com.

Have a good week,

Steve Kay

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