DTN Livestock Midday: Livestock Contracts Lower

    Cattle feeding. Photo: ©Debra L Ferguson

    It’s a lower-pressured day of the livestock complex as all three markets scale to weaker prices.

    General Comments

    Thursday hasn’t granted the livestock complex any favors as all three contracts continue to trade lower into today’s afternoon hours. A bearish mindset as taken over the market as traders are leery of supporting the livestock contracts and consequently the markets are scaling lower. December corn is up 2 cents per bushel and December soybean meal is up $6.90. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is down 14.41 points and NASDAQ is down 52.99 points.


    The live cattle complex is tipping lower as bearish pressure continues to overwhelm the market. December live cattle are down $1.05 at $103.52, February live cattle are down $1.32 at $106.75 and April live cattle are down $1.00 at $109.87. As the board slides lower, the cash cattle market sits idly as bids are obsolete. Earlier this week Northern dressed deals ranged from $163 to $165, which is mostly $3.00 to $4.00 lower than last week. Southern cattle have traded for mostly $106, which is mostly $2.00 lower than last week.

    Beef net sales of 21,700 MT reported for 2020 were up 62% from the previous week and 13% from the prior four-week average. The three biggest buyers were South Korea (5,400 mt, including decreases of 400 mt), China (3,700 mt) and Japan (3,600 mt, including decreases of 600 mt).

    Boxed beef prices are higher: choice up $1.05 ($209.52) and select up $1.03 ($191.94) with a movement of 73 loads (38.81 loads of choice, 20.77 loads of select, 5.34 loads of trim and 7.63 loads of ground beef).


    Trading in a sideways pattern from Monday’s new low, the feeder cattle market hasn’t been gifted any bullish favors to give the market any reason to trade higher. November feeders are down $0.75 at $130.45, January feeders are down $1.10 at $125.97 and March feeders are down $1.12 at $126.02. Calves continue to sell at lower prices as the market is pressured to trade lower as supply outweighs demand and buyers must look at the nation’s corn prices and keep break-even levels in check. Calves without a vaccination program and that haven’t been long weaned are selling anywhere from $0.08 to $0.12 back from last week.


    The lean hog market was hopeful for a strong export report, but the outcome was unsatisfying and leaves the market trading fully lower. December lean hogs are down $2.72 at $66.47, February lean hogs are down $1.37 at $67.07 and April lean hogs are down $1.35 at $69.45. As the market continues to weigh the factors within the industry – the lower export report and decline in cash prices aren’t surprising, but thankfully the continued support for pork within U.S. consumers has helped feel pork cutout values elevated.

    The projected lean hog index for 10/21/2020 is up $0.09 at $78.60 and the actual index for 10/20/2020 is up $0.07 at $0.07 at $78.69. Hog prices are lower on the National Direct Morning Hog Report, down $3.53 with a weighted average of $59.80, ranging from $56.00 to $65.00 on 4,410 head and a five-day rolling average of $60.31. Pork cutouts total 207.23 loads with 160.56 loads of pork cuts and 46.67 loads of trim. Pork cutout values: up $3.99, $102.15.

    Pork net sales of 26,800 mt reported for 2020 were unchanged from the previous week, but down 35% from the prior four-week average. The three biggest buyers were Mexico (13,800 mt, including decreases of 800 mt), Japan (4,900 mt, including decreases of 200 mt) and China (1,800 mt, including decreases of 1,500 mt).

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