CATTLE OUTLOOK – Ron Plain and Scott Brown
Ag Economics, MU July 15, 2016
The average price of choice beef at retail was $6.20 per pound during
June. That was 11.9 cents higher than in May, 20.6 than in June 2015,
and the highest monthly average price since March. The June average
grocery store price for all fresh beef was $5.832 per pound.
The 5 area average price of for slaughter steers was $123.00/cwt
during June. That as $7.20 lower than in May, $28.20 lower than in
June 2015, and the lowest monthly average since August 2013.
USDA’s July WASDE forecasts have U.S. beef production up 5.3% this
year and up another 3.4% in 2017.
USDA weekly crop progress report said that 13% of U.S. pastures were
in poor or very poor condition as of July 10. That is up 1 point from
the week before and 4 points higher than a year ago.
Fed cattle sales volume was moderate this week. Through Thursday, the
5-area average price for slaughter steers sold on a live weight basis
was $117.00/cwt, down $3.38 from last week’s average and down $29.00
from a year ago. The 5-area dressed steer price averaged $187.42/cwt,
down $3.24 from the week before and down $47.58 from a year ago.
This morning the choice boxed beef cutout value was $205.37/cwt, down
$4.49 from the previous Friday and down $27.94 from a year ago. The
select carcass cutout this morning was $193.24/cwt, down $3.73 from
last week and down $36.44 compared to last year. The choice-select
spread, $12.15/cwt this morning, remains large.
This week’s cattle slaughter totaled only 594,000 head, up 16.5% from
last week (which was low because of the Independence Day holiday) and
up 9.6% from a year ago.
The average steer dressed weight for the week ending on July 2 was 868
pounds, up 4 pounds from the week before, down 7 pounds from a year
ago, and below the year-ago level for the ninth consecutive week.
Year-to-date, cattle slaughter is up 3.1% and beef production is up
Stocker and feeder cattle prices at the Oklahoma City auction were
mostly steady this week. Prices for medium and large frame #1 steers
by weight group were: 400-450# $170, 450-500# $158.50-$168, 500-550#
$159-$164.50, 550-600# $140-$160.25, 600-650# $143-$154, 650-700#
$137-$148.50, 700-750# $136.50-$148, 750-800# $138.50-$145.50,
800-900# $130-$141.50 and 900-1000# $126.50-$133/cwt.
The August live cattle futures contract settled at $110.92/cwt today,
down $1.30 for the week. October fed cattle settled at $109.85/cwt,
down $2.47 from the previous Friday. The December contract ended the
week at $111.45/cwt.
August feeder cattle futures ended the week at $139.57/cwt, down $3.88
from a week earlier. October feeder cattle closed the week down $4.10