Today, CME futures rallied back to the 10-day average. The summer doldrums continue with seasonal lows in wholesale beef values, and cash trade remains limited.
Futures were green across both boards; the August live cattle contract traded 47 cents higher to $100.90, October up $1.17 to $105, and December up 80 cents to $108.87. Feeder cattle contracts traded similarly: the August contract was up $1.35 to $140.70, September up $1.67 to $141.30, and October up $1.25 to $141.92. The latest known CME Cattle Feeder Index was down slightly at $139.77.
Negotiated cash trading in the Southern Plains and western Corn Belt has been limited on light demand. In the Texas Panhandle, a few live trades moved at $95, and in Kansas, a few live trades moved from $95-97.50. Trade in the Northern Plains has been at a standstill. A few dressed purchases in the western Corn Belt moved at $161, but there was not enough trade in any regions for a full market trend.
A total of 7,139 head moved on the negotiated market, and 25,100 head moved on formula purchases. Steers and heifers weighing 874 lbs. averaged $154.47 on formula sales.
OKC West Livestock Auction in El Reno, OK, reported 1,500 head in receipts. Compared to last week, steer and heifer calves were not well tested, but a lower undertone was noted. Demand was moderate and quality was plain to average.
Boxed beef prices were mixed: on a load of 124, the Choice cutout gained 41 cents to $202.96 and the Select cutout dropped $1.81 to $188.32.
Slaughter levels are at normal: estimated slaughter for the day is 119,000 head, on trend with last week and last year. — Anna Miller, WLJ editor