Cattle Outlook

US - Fed cattle prices were higher for the second week in a row. The 5-area daily weighted average price for slaughter steers sold through Thursday of this week on a live weight basis was $112.17/cwt, up $2.86 from last week.
calendar icon 1 July 2011
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Ron Plain
Ron Plain

Steers sold on a dressed weight basis this week averaged $178.86/cwt, $1.28 higher than the week before.

For the second week in a row, boxed beef prices ended the week higher. Friday morning the choice boxed beef carcass cutout value was $178.93/cwt, up $6.01 from last week. The select carcass cutout was up $5.39 from the previous Friday to $173.83 per hundred pounds of carcass weight.

This week’s cattle slaughter totaled 684,000 head, down 0.6 per cent from the week before, but up 2.4 per cent compared to the same week last year. The average steer dressed weight for the week ending June 11 was 829 pounds, up 2 pound from the week before and 11 pounds heavier than for the same week in 2010. Steer weights have been above year-ago levels for 27 consecutive weeks.

Cash bids for feeder cattle around the country this week were mostly steady to $6 higher than last week. Oklahoma City prices this week were $6 to $10 higher with price ranges for medium and large frame #1 steers: 400-450# $153-$159, 450-500# $139-$151.50, 500-550# $132-$144.50, 550-600# $131.25-$141.50, 600-650# $129-$139, 650-700# $123.50-$139.50, 700-750# $126.25-$140, 750-800# $120-$138.85, 800-900# $126.25-$135.50 and 900-1000# $121-$125/cwt.

The June fed cattle futures contract ended the week at $113.05/cwt, up $3.30 from last week’s close. August ended the week at $113.50/cwt, also up $3.30. The October contract closed at $119.75, up $3.63 for the week. December settled at $122.70.

Corn futures prices declined this week with the July contract loosing 30 cents to settle at $6.70 per bushel on Friday.

USDA’s June cattle on feed report said placements during May were down 10.8 per cent compared to a year ago. That is the largest percentage drop of any month since May 2009. Each weight category had fewer head placed than last May. May marketings from large feed yards were up 7.3 per cent, mostly due to one extra slaughter day. The number of cattle on feed at the start of June was up 4.1 per cent compared to the same day last year. This is the closest on-feed numbers have been to last year since December.

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