Livestock contracts closed mixed as the cattle contracts weakened into Friday’s close, but the lean hog sector made advancements.
Live cattle contracts weren’t granted any favors throughout Friday’s trade as contracts closed $0.07 to $0.87 lower. August live cattle closed $0.17 higher at $102.80, October live cattle closed $0.52 lower at $106.45 and December live cattle closed $0.87 lower at $110.07. Traders seemed to grow leery of the market as the momentum in the feeder cattle contracts was weakening in the later part of the week, and coming off last week’s rally, pushing contracts higher seemed risky. Friday’s cash cattle trade was quiet as the cattle that did trade were mostly steady with the week’s earlier accomplishments. Cattle traded in Iowa for $163 to $164, some cattle traded in Nebraska for $163 and Kansas moved some cattle late Friday afternoon for $100. Friday’s slaughter is estimated at 109,000 head — 4,000 head less than a week ago and 8,000 head less than a year ago. Saturday’s kill is projected to be around 60,000 head.
Boxed beef prices closed higher: choice up $0.81 ($205.47) and select up $0.74 ($192.75) with a movement of 116 loads (64.21 loads of choice, 14.99 loads of select, 15.53 loads of trim and 20.93 loads of ground beef).
MONDAY’S CASH CATTLE CALL:
Steady to slightly higher. Feeders will be anxious to price cattle higher again as they were able to move the market higher this week and really push on packers. Packers may push back as the lack of demand from the restaurant sector is changing their customary marketing structure.
Friday’s pressure grew stronger as the day traded through the afternoon and the market’s downward trend captured most of the feeder cattle contracts. August feeder cattle closed $0.75 lower at $142.72, September feeder cattle closed $0.75 lower at $145.12 and October feeder cattle closed $0.37 lower at $146.40. With feeder cattle sales continuing to ring the bell across the nation, next week’s market is going to have to face the same challenge as weeks past: is there enough support to surpass resistance and keep above the $143.85 threshold or will the market fear a topping chart and simply trade sideways with little aggression? Iowa’s weekly cattle report shared that on average, compared to a week ago feeder steers weighing 500 to 825 pounds sold steady to $10.00. And feeder heifers weighing 500 to 725 pounds sold $1.00 to $5.00 higher. The CME feeder cattle index 8/6/2020: up $1.13, $141.92.