October cattle closed sharply higher on the session yesterday for the second day in a row, as the market has risen as much as 367 points above Friday's lows. The cattle market traded lower early in the session, finding selling pressure from weakness in hogs and sluggish outside market forces. A sharp selloff in the US stock market added to the negative tone. However, reports that cash cattle were trading higher for the week last week along with ideas that the beef market may reach a near-term low soon helped futures to surge higher into the midsession, ultimately rallying to the highest price level since August 18th. October futures are projecting cash prices near $115.00-$116.00 this week, which would be up $2.00-$3.00 from last week. Boxed beef cutout values were up 21 cents at mid-session yesterday and closed 8 cents lower at $180.68. This is the lowest beef market since August 12th, and compares with $186.20 last week at this time. The estimated cattle slaughter came in at 123,000 head yesterday. This brings the total for the week so far to 129,000 head, down from 254,000 head last week at this time and down from 135,000 head a year ago.
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