Cattle Markets Begin 2019 Steady To Higher

Feeder steers under 700 pounds sold at higher prices this week, while their heavier mates found lower bids. ( Wyatt Bechtel )

Cash fed cattle traded at steady prices this week while feeder steers under 700 pounds sold at higher to sharply higher prices.

The bulk of fed cattle traded Thursday at $123, steady money with the week before. Cattle sold on a dressed basis at $193 to $195 per cwt. Closeouts the previous week saw average feedlot profits of $103 per head at those prices.

Boxed beef cutout prices were mostly steady on the week. Friday’s Choice cutout closed at $214.51, up a dime from the previous Friday. Select cutout closed Friday at $207.52, up 14 cents from the previous week. The Choice-Select spread was $6.85.

Compared with two weeks ago, steers under 700 pounds sold at auction $1 to $4 per cwt. higher, with instances of up to $9 higher in Nebraska. Steers weighing more than 700 pounds sold steady to $4 lower.

Agricultural Marketing Service reporters said cattle sold in the southeastern region at sharply higher prices on all classes due to good demand and very light receipts.

“This week’s receipts across the country were hindered for several reasons,” AMS said. “Not all markets were operational this week, due to the holiday interruptions early week; heavy rains throughout the Southeast and winter storms on much of the North Central and South Center regions.”

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