Cash cattle were mostly steady this week. The five-area live and dressed steer price finished the week at $130.85 and $205, respectively, down $0.10 and $1.04. Trading in the Southern Plains was called at $132. In Nebraska, live and dressed cattle, respectively, sold at $131-$132 and $206-$207. In the Western Cornbelt live cattle trade was reported at $129-$130 and dressed cattle sold at $206-$207.Steers and heifers of all classes in Oklahoma City sold steady this week. In Mississippi auction markets this week, feeder steers were steady to $3 lower and feeder heifers were $3-$4 lower, while steer and heifer calves were about $5 lower. Cull cows and bulls were steady, while replacement females were mixed.
Live cattle futures finished the day Friday slightly higher than last Friday. Prices continued to rally following last Friday’s strength. The market is currently following the supply side of the market and putting in a short supply premium for the upcoming holiday purchases. Feeder cattle also benefitted from declines in corn.
Corn prices erased the bulk of the strength from the aftermath of the very bullish supply and demand report last week. Despite increased demand expectations, traders recognize that a large crop will be harvested. To close the week, the Environmental Protection Agency indicated they would lower the allowable amount of ethanol to be blended with petroleum based gasoline from 18.15 billion gallons to 15.21.
After falling late last week, wholesale boxed beef inched higher before slipping just a bit this week. Choice beef averaged $202.25, down $2.22. Select averaged $188.50, down $1.49.
Note: Unless otherwise noted, all cattle and beef prices are quoted in dollars per hundredweight and corn prices are quoted in dollars per bushel.